Social Icons

Pages

Thursday, April 14, 2011

A Disturbance in the Force There Is

The words "Canon" and "Loose" are springing to mind this morning.  Feel free to re-arrange them from Yoda speak into english. and then to ascertain a meaning from them should you so wish to do so.  Basically, if you don't know what you're on about - shut up.

Meaning
An unpredictable person or thing, liable to cause damage if not kept in check by others. Origin The allusion in the phrase is to improperly secured cannons on ships which were likely to roll about on deck and damage the ship. No evidence has come to light to indicate that the phrase was used by sailors in the days that ships carried cannons. The term is alluded to in Victor Hugo’s novel Ninety Three, 1874. A translation of the French original describes cannons being tossed about onboard following a violent incident onboard ship:

"The carronade, hurled forward by the pitching, dashed into this knot of men, and crushed four at the first blow; then, flung back and shot out anew by the rolling, it cut in two a fifth poor fellow" ... " The enormous cannon was left alone. She was given up to herself. She was her own mistress, and mistress of the vessel. She could do what she willed with both."

Henry Kingsley picked up this reference in his novel Number Seventeen, 1875 :

"At once, of course, the ship was in the trough of the sea, a more fearfully dangerous engine of destruction than Mr. Victor Hugo’s celebrated loose cannon."

The earliest figurative use of 'loose cannon', i.e. a usage not relating to actual cannons, in print that I can find is from The Galveston Daily News, December 1889:

The negro vote in the south is a unit now mainly because it is opposed by the combined white vote. It would in no event become, as Mr. Grady once said, "a loose cannon in a storm-tossed ship."



This post originally appeared here: Posterous
 

Where is Golfyball?

Categories

1960's (1) 1970's (15) 1980's (9) 1990's (6) 3D (2) 750 words (9) A.A.Milne (1) Aberdeen (3) Adobe (1) AGS (1) America (3) Android (5) Apple (38) Apps (6) Art (3) Austerity (4) Badman (20) Bank Holiday (5) Bath (1) BBC (11) BBQ (4) Beer (9) Big Brother (4) Birthday (13) Blogging (25) Books (14) Boston (1) Bowling (2) Britains Got Talent (2) Broadband (2) Browsers (2) BST (3) Budget (3) Camping (2) Cancer (1) Car (8) Catching Up (2) Cats (3) Charity (3) Cheese Rolling (7) Cheltenham (14) Cheltenham Gold Cup (9) China (1) Christmas (12) Cinema (6) Cloud (3) Coffee (13) Comedy (13) Commuting (1) Conspiracy (7) Conspiracy Theory (1) Cooking (15) Corrie (2) Council (3) Cows (1) Cricket (1) Cuba (2) Cycling (11) Dad (5) Daughter (74) Davina (4) Dentists (2) Digital Economy Bill (9) Dilbert (25) Dining Out (24) Discworld (3) DIY (8) Dogs (1) Domesticity (11) Drinking (4) Drugs (2) Easter Egg (1) eBay (1) Egg Salad Sandwich (2) Election (29) eMail (3) Employment (9) England (10) Events (1) Facebook (12) Family (25) Festival (4) Flash (1) Football (10) FourSquare (9) France (1) Friday (2) Funny (1) G+ (1) Gaming (1) Geeking (15) Getting Back On The Horse (1) Gifts (2) Gloucester (13) Gold Medal (2) Golf (23) Golfy's Office (2) Golfyball (1) Gone To Ground (10) Google (17) Gorse Fox (2) Government (18) Growing Up (9) Hacking (2) Hair cut (5) Health (8) History (12) Holiday (24) Home Working (6) Hospital (2) Hottub (7) How it used to be (10) How things used to be (1) Hung Parliament (2) I3 (7) iCloud (1) IM (1) Infographic (3) InLaws (5) Internet (7) iOS (21) iPad (14) iPhone (31) IT (2) iTunes (1) Japan (1) JoliCloud (1) Keep Calm and Carry On (11) Kids at home (7) Kindle (1) Lawn (13) Lebowski (5) Lion (1) Literature (2) Liverpool (1) London (18) Lotus (1) Mainframe (1) Marriot (1) Media (4) Microsoft (4) MiniBlog (1) Mobile (2) Moon (2) Mothers Day (1) Movember (1) Movies (75) Moving House (2) Mrs G (104) Music (23) Nerds (2) New Year (3) New York (4) New Zealand (1) News (8) O2 (3) Olympics (2) Oscars (3) OSX (1) Papers (2) Photography (16) PIPA (1) Playstation (4) Podcast (1) Politics (8) Post Office (1) Power (2) Pub (7) Public Transport (6) QI (2) Queen (1) Quiz (2) Rabbits (3) Racing tips (3) Radio 4 (2) Rainbows (3) Random (1) Redundancy (5) Retirement (1) Roast (1) Roast beef (1) Rumour (2) Sainsburys (5) Science (1) SciFi (1) Scobi (15) Scotland (5) Secret Lair (1) Security (3) Shakespear (2) Sherlock (5) Shopping (5) Sister (6) Skiing (1) Skype (2) Smoking (2) Socialising (15) SocNet (3) Son (18) SOPA (1) Spain (4) Specials (5) Sport (7) Starfleet (74) Stress (2) Stretch (3) Stroud (1) Stuff you might have missed (9) Summer (7) Sunday (13) Sync (1) Tax (3) Tax Man (1) Tech (31) Tennis (1) Thailand (3) The Lads (6) The Queen (6) Tizwaz (1) Travel (17) Tuesday (1) TV (26) TV Adverts (3) Twitter (23) Ubuntu (3) USA (2) Victoria Coren (1) Video (23) Volcano (4) Wales (3) Walking (3) War (1) Weather (16) Web 2.0 (3) Weddings (7) Weekend (8) WiFi (4) Wikipedia (5) Wildlife (1) Wiltshire (5) Windows (2) Wittertainment (9) Worcester (1) World Cup (12) WOTM (2) Writing (6) WTC (21) XBox (1) Youths (2) Youtube (6)

Recent Visitors