Monday, May 21, 2007

Gargoyle

GARGOYLE, n. A rain-spout projecting from the eaves of mediaeval buildings, commonly fashioned into a grotesque caricature of some personal enemy of the architect or owner of the building. This was especially the case in churches and ecclesiastical structures generally, in which the gargoyles presented a perfect rogues' gallery of local heretics and controversialists. Sometimes when a new dean and chapter were installed the old gargoyles were removed and others substituted having a closer relation to the private animosities of the new incumbents.

2007 Update: Architectural evidence that the most pious and devoted medievel Christians still sought protection from pagans. The overhead powerpoint presentation of the Dark Ages.

36 comments:

puppybrose said...

first?

The Old Mule said...

gargoyle: bestial stone.

puppybrose said...

laughing, because when i first looked at this word i read "gargle", and thought... hmmm. why would Bierce have a definition for that?

sorry about the "first" thing, Penguin. *looks over shoulder, climbs up on roof and attaches stone penguin to the eaves above front door* ; )

quilly said...

gargoyle to rinse one's sore throat with salt & water.

quilly said...

grrr -- [feather growls at puppy]

mireille said...

Overhead PowerPoint exhibiting local heretic having a close relationship to my private animosities. lol. Gallows would work, too. xoxo

pia said...

gargoyle:some faces are fierce, others are kindly, still more grotesque

A great building has one to protect (or judge) every person who walks through that building whether or not they know it

Mutha said...

Gargoyles: Another example of how hard working unfortunates had to do someone else's dirty work. See also, "Flying Monkeys."

TLP said...

So, you're sayin' that those aren't dried heads lost to a guillotine? Huh! Learn somethin' every day over here.

Jamie Dawn said...

gargoyles: morning faces before orange juice, toast, and preening

Also, see ugliness.

G said...

Gargoyles: The precursor to home security systems. They may have worked better too.

ariel said...

gargoyle, trapped beast that is sentenced to vomit water instead of fire for ever, amen. (thanks, Mule!)

karma said...

i have a hunch about quasimodo *waving garlic*

gopjcagm: going in pajamas to a gym in California

karma said...

hey ariel!

Minka said...

gargoyle,n: they´d make wonderful private detectives due to their ability to stay in one place watching for long periods of time. Since they can´t do anything with money, you can pay them in pigeons, which would erase another problem, too!

gargoyle, never bother making contact with us because they are incapable of closing their mouths. Impossible to pronounce human phonemes that way ;)

the amoeba said...

GARGOYLE, n. Evidence that Thomas Bowdler is alive and well and living at the Disney studios.

ariel said...

Karma, that's because they sleep with the trainer. ;)

I cannot remember when was the last time I said I love your verifiers, so I just say it again, I love your verifiers!

Doug said...

Neva you were first. I guess I need some new gargoyles.

Mule, that's a beautifully poetic phrase. I kinda want to rinse off, though.

Neva, *gets bonked on the head by falling penguin statuary while composing smart-alecky comment. Suffers no discernible damage*

Quilldancer, the first law of caninity: always growl before freshening breath.

Mireille, gallows work great!

Pia, every building has them, too. In modern construction, they're placed near the water cooler.

Mutha, I fear that I might no more see
A working dog or flying monkey
This disaster of these latter ages:
Man's laziness has become contagious.
There's naught to do but cry and laugh
When the master's ease infects the staff.

TLP, see BREAKFAST.

Or after coffee, Jamie Dawn?

G, gargoyles worked much worse. Can you imagine running around while bells were ringing trying to remember the Da Vinci Code?

Ariel, that's the definition of the day. I'd be humbled if I had enough sense.

Karma, I've often wondered the same thing about Quasimodo. He looks and sounds Italian. I sure miss your verifiers when you hide.

Minka, I've met a person or two who could talk without closing their mouths. I'm not naming names, though.

Amoeba, Bowdler is a hero to me. He proved that meaning means less to literature than language. I consider him a forbear.

Agreed, Ariel.

goldennib said...

I was going to mention that I gargoyle every morning with mouthwash, but I was beaten to the punch early on.

G said...

Hahahahaha!!!

al said...

Gargoyle: A cherub with a thyroid condition.

TLP said...

Gurgling griffins guarding galleries.

Tom & Icy said...

I like Garboys and Gargoyles both

puppybrose said...

*wakes up, rubs bump on top of head* ouch. that's the last time i shop at Gargoyles R Us. d'oh!

come to think of it, Gargoyle reminds me of a song from Mary Poppins: "Chim chimerae, chim chimerae, chim chim cheroooooooooooh!"

Doug said...

Nessa, there's nothing worse than second-hand mouthwash.

Nyuk, nyuk, G.

Al, that's pretty funny. Or a cupid in the morning?

great going, TLP!

Haha, Icy. Good goyle!

Puppy, you're making jokes out of both sides of your mouths today.

Joel said...

makes me think of Ghostbusters.

puppybrose said...

HaHaHa aHaHaH

Minka said...

Doug, Good! Saves me the time to mention names for people who talk out of their...umm...rears!

actonbell said...

This is most interesting--fascinating Bierce definition, clever Doug's:)

I always thought gargoyles were like scarepigeons--it's obvious that they scare the poop out of those birds.

karma said...

ariel, i love you back :))

dawg: why ain't i talking these days? guess gargoyle got my tongue

Doug said...

And rightly so, Joel.

It's a fine line, Neva, between a chimera and Medusa.

Minka, I think what we have here is the ancient agreement of mutual assured destruction.

I wonder how true it is, Actonbell. I agree its interesting.

In that xase, K I wish a mild monsoon season.

cooper said...

The only thing I know is when someone asks you what you are doing while you are gargling, with a mouth full of green stuff, it's going to sound like gargoyle.

tsduff said...

I love it when my sweetie brings his gargoyles along... in fact we are meeting up with the baby gargoyle in Milan in a few short days... oh, weren't we talking about the daughters?

Mutha said...

Thanks for the poem Doug -- is it just like falling off a log for you? Or is that someone else's work?

Doug said...

Sure, Coop, but it looks better.

Terry, only you can answer that.

Neither, Mutha. But silliness comes naturally.

Indeterminacy said...

I thought I left a comment here yesterday, but it apparently got eaten. I probably mispelled the wordveri thing.

All I said was, your definition is perfect and there was nothing I could add to it.