Thursday, July 30, 2020

Drunk as the lord

This expression is often misunderstood, especially by those encountering it with the word Lord capitalized, which is not only theologically blasphemous, but even worse, grammatically incorrect!

I recall that the correctly capitalized Lord supplied abundant wine at Cana when the guests were already quite drunk, but He is not reported to have drunk any of it himself.

No, the word lord, in the odd-sounding expression serving as header to this blog entry, is not to be capitalized, for it refers not to the Lord of the universe, but to the lord of a rather smaller abode, namely, the manor, hence an English lord, a man of the manor born, a man not nearly so well to do as God, but still a person of resources sufficient to waste the time and money required for getting drunk. Regularly.


At 2:24 AM, Blogger Siroch said...

That's interesting. I always remembered it as "a lord," so the question of whether "lord' should or should not be capitalized never occurred to me. I am from New England, if that has any relevance, but have done a lot of reading in a long life, and cannot recall ever seeing "drunk as the lord." Could have come across it and been thinking of something else and so missed it, of course...

At 6:48 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

I suppose they would fit different circumstances, with "the" referring to some particular lord. A Google search might clear things up.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 3:19 PM, Blogger Siroch said...

Yes, that explanation makes sense. So the use of "the," unless referring to a specific lord of the manor in a historical setting of some sort, is simply an amusing error.

At 7:48 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Seems so. The indefinite article version is far more common in a Google search.

Jeffery Hodges

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