1. Fedora
    Offline

    Fedora Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2009
    Messages:
    119
    Likes Received:
    24

    Quotidian as a noun

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by Fedora, Sep 7, 2010.

    "People turn to literature to escape the quotidian, not to relive it."

    Is the word used correctly here (something recurring daily)? I've been trying to rephrase this sentence for days.
     
  2. Wreybies
    Offline

    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    May 1, 2008
    Messages:
    18,840
    Likes Received:
    10,017
    Location:
    Puerto Rico
    It's not my tune to ask an unusual word to step back, but quotidian is a bit obscure. And by a bit, I mean extremely.

    I would rephrase with an eye toward a word that is a little more accessible.
     
  3. hiddennovelist
    Offline

    hiddennovelist Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2009
    Messages:
    10,256
    Likes Received:
    161
    Location:
    Fabulous Sin City
    ^I couldn't agree more, unless the goal is to deliberately use a word that most people don't recognize. Like Wrey, I'm all for using unique/semi-obscure words, but this one is a little too obscure, I think.
     
  4. Elgaisma
    Offline

    Elgaisma Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2010
    Messages:
    5,337
    Likes Received:
    92
    I thought it meant fever lol which it can do:)

    No I don't think it makes sense: People turn to literature in order to escape the recurring daily, not to relive it. It would make sense if you were using it as an adjective but not a noun.
     
  5. Fedora
    Offline

    Fedora Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2009
    Messages:
    119
    Likes Received:
    24
    Thanks, guys. I had no idea it was obscure or anything. I'll just use "austerity" instead.
     
  6. minstrel
    Online

    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2010
    Messages:
    8,723
    Likes Received:
    4,821
    Location:
    Near Los Angeles
    I don't think it's too obscure, but it's being used as a synonym for "everyday", which is definitely more common. Why not just use "everyday"?
     
  7. Fedora
    Offline

    Fedora Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2009
    Messages:
    119
    Likes Received:
    24
    I already used that in the following sentence. It was definitely an option, though.
     
  8. art
    Offline

    art Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2010
    Messages:
    1,159
    Likes Received:
    113
    A nice word. If you said,'..quotidian concerns, not to relive them', brighter readers, hitherto unaware of the word, would likely gather the meaning anyway.
     
    1 person likes this.
  9. Cogito
    Offline

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    35,935
    Likes Received:
    2,043
    Location:
    Massachusetts, USA
    Quotidian is an adjective, not a noun. You could use other agjectives, like mundane or humdrum, or you could find a noun that fits the needs of your context.
     
  10. Elgaisma
    Offline

    Elgaisma Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2010
    Messages:
    5,337
    Likes Received:
    92
    it's both but has limited meaning as a noun it can only be used in terms of the fever or recurring everyday.
     
  11. Cogito
    Offline

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    35,935
    Likes Received:
    2,043
    Location:
    Massachusetts, USA
    Not in any of the dictionaries I consulted.
     
  12. Elgaisma
    Offline

    Elgaisma Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2010
    Messages:
    5,337
    Likes Received:
    92
    dictionary.com has it as both so does my Grandad's 1949 affair. (only one I have out with moving it is my most comprehensive.)

    I notice the Oxford English Dictionary no longer has antiquated chronic fever reference either but it is in a 1940s nursing manual. It restricts it to maleria whereas I am sure it was used for things like brucellosis etc as well
     
  13. minstrel
    Online

    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2010
    Messages:
    8,723
    Likes Received:
    4,821
    Location:
    Near Los Angeles
    But adjectives sometimes do double-duty as nouns, as in "It may be out of the ordinary for adjectives to do double-duty as nouns" (in which the adjective "ordinary" is used as a noun). Someone might say "When it comes to music, I like the hard more than the soft." There's an implied noun and we let it pass.

    I don't think the usage in the original post is grammatically inadmissible.
     

Share This Page