Did you know that The Hobbit has been translated into Latin? I know that now because I found a copy at a local bookstore. My wife was with me that day so somehow, incredibly, she convinced me not to purchase it. Her argument was that owning The Hobbit in Latin was not a necessity in our lives right now. Hmm, depends on how you define the word 'necessity,' but I begrudgingly agreed with her at the time.
But then over the next few days the thought kept creeping on me -- wait, of course owning The Hobbit in Latin is a necessity! My daughter is 11 months old, if she doesn't hear the sounds of Latin right now then the language part of her brain will turn off and she'll be stuck monolingual like the rest of us. She deserves better. For the sake of my daughter I had to buy this book, if they still had it...
You're not going to believe this but the bookstore still had the book on the shelf! I know, I know, I too was worried that countless people would be interested in grabbing this book. So I snatched it up and have been reading snippets to my daughter ever since. It's been years since I took Latin so chances are high I'm butchering my pronunciations but still, it's a nice motivator to refresh myself on the language I studied through High School.
One of the things I'm enjoying most about reading to my daughter is the music of the sentences. Latin has its own rhythms and beats. That's why I love listening to languages I don't even know, they have ups and downs, lilts and pushes, sentences twist and flow.
The same has also been true for reading children's books in English: the silliness of kid books helps you remember the fun of language. Who can forget those early Seuss rhymes? Or the poetry of Shel Silverstein? All day I've been walking around with a sentence in my mind from one of my daughter's books, "Roly poly on the rug!"
So with all of this in mind, here's my next piece of the "Life-Sized Word Search" list, where I look for real life instances of every word in the English dictionary. I was on the search for words aa- to ac- but I recently found the word adze in a book I was reading, and since I probably won't stumble on that again anytime soon I'm declaring open season on aa- through ad-.
In the book She's Such a Geek, Edited by Annalee Newitz and Charlie Anders: 16 accessory, 43 accrue, 149 aborted, 158 acquired, 175 accidental and acceptance, 178 action and A+, 184 a la, 187 actually, 188 accurately, 193 acclaim, 206 acquiescence.
So Many Books, So Little Time by Sara Nelson: page 26, above.
Jimmy's Blues by James Baldwin: 7 aching, 22 accomplice.
Parasites Like Us by Adam Johnson: 136 absorbers, 149 absently, 218 accommodation, 258 achromatic, 262 able-bodied, 264 accountant, 293 acute, 294 A-okay, 329 accelerating.
And for ad-: 'added' in Aug 22 post of Elevated Bag Lady, 'adolescent' in 5 and 193 of She's Such a Geek, 8 advantage, address admonition adze and advanced in Parasites Like Us, admit in Growing Your Faith by Giving it Away.