Wednesday, February 6, 2013


Meaning: Causing shipwreck.

Usefulness: 1 (Besides reefs and certain parts of the Victorian coastline, this word is terribly useful in a figurative sense. Since almost anything can be wrecked - prospects, plans, hearts - anything that wrecks can be metaphorically naufragous.)

Logofascination: 1 (One of those words that makes me think there really is a word for everything. Related to navicular, of course, but also to the frangere family - so something naufragous is something that renders ships frangible.)

In the wild: Not nearly enough; Motteux used in his translation of G&P Books the Fourth and Fifth. These were based on Sir Thomas' notes, so it's possible he knew this word.

Degrees: 2

Connections: naufragous - shipwreck

Which is used in: Logopandecteision. In the sixth book, Sir Thomas is continuing to discuss creditors and their evil ways. The modern equivalent would perhaps be bankers:
27 Fear of piracy and shipwreck will not permit those men to adventure the launching forth into the depth; and uncertainty how the prices may rule, deters them from the hazard of bargains by land; thus the seas are not sailed, nor the ground half tilled, nor doth that parcel thereof which is laboured, for lack of apt materials wherewith to manure it, yeeld half the increase which otherwise it would, and yet they would be rich; whereby it is manifest that their ignorance is great, their laziness far greater, but their covetousness and avarice is far the greatest of all. 

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