John "The Gneech" Robey (the_gneech) wrote,
John "The Gneech" Robey
the_gneech

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Today's Forgotten English

canny
A genuine Newcastle word applied to ... the beauty of form, as of manners and morals, but most particularly is used to describe those mild and affectionate dispositions which render the persons agreeable in the domestic state.
--John Brockett's Glossary of North Country Words, 1825


On this date in 1871, New York Herald foreign correspondent Henry Morton Stanley encountered David Livingstone in "darkest Africa." Two years earlier, the newspaper's publisher James Gordon Bennett had telegraphed Stanley, asking him to track down the Scottish missionary-explorer. On finally finding him, he uttered, with conspicuous formality, "Dr. Livingstone, I presume?" Stanley had located the good doctor at Ujiji, on Lake Tanganyika, an area Livingstone was helping open to European business interests. Taken by surprise, Livingstone managed only the tepid response, "Yes, that is my name." The public found this stilted exchange entertaining, and it has remained a favorite anecdote in the annals of ettiquette. In fact, Dr. Livingstone was not lost, and he remained in Africa until his death.

Those wacky missionary-explorers. ;)

-The Gneech
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