Saturday, September 22, 2012


Meaning: a book of everything! Used by the Romans to refer to books of the law, this word's Greek origins mean all-receiving (an inn-keeper was a pandocheus). It was apparently the title of a few works of 'universal knowledge', or as we might call them, encyclopedias.

Usefulness: 1 ("I refer you to the great pandect, Wikipedia..." "My satchel is weighed down by the latest tax pandects." "The company OHS pandect has been revised as a direct result of your behaviour at last week's dinner.")

Logofascination: 1 (Romans and Greeks and, yes, Sir Thomas)

In the wild: this is rather circular, as I found it while reading up on Sir Thomas, but it is also the name of a few companies.

Degrees: 1

Connections: pandect - Logopandecteision

Which is used in: the title of Logopandecteision, a book outlining Sir Thomas' plans for a universal language - no-one is quite sure how serious he was, possibly not even Sir Thomas himself. The pandect in the title may refer to the Roman pandects, but it is more likely that, with his customary humility, Sir Thomas was trying to describe his new language as something like 'that which receives (encompasses) all words,' although I'm not entirely sure about the "-eision" part, since I have almost no Greek, classical or otherwise.  Sir Thomas' language will not suffer from the weakness of having to borrow from others. He quite rightly points out that if a number of languages, particularly English, were "stript of what is not originally their own, we should not be able with them all, in any part of the world, to purchase so much as our breakfast in a market."

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