Thursday, February 27, 2014

Middle English Word of the Day: Signacle

Signacle is a great word to use when composing period award texts.  After all, what are the award badges but signs of genuineness?   So an upcoming text will "further commaunde, compell & instructe the seide [edited] to ware hens-forward upon her persone the signacles & tokens of the seyd Ordre."

From the Middle English Dictionary:

signacle (n.) Also signacule, sinacle. [OF signacle, sinacle & L signa macronculum.]

(a) A seal, sign of genuineness, hallmark; the sign of the cross; (b) a likeness, an image.

(a)  (c1384) WBible(1) (Dc 369(2))   1 Cor.9.2:  Thou3 to othere I am not apostle, but nethelees to 3ou I am; forwhy 3e ben the sygnacle [vr. token; L signaculum], or litil signe, of myn apostilhed in the Lord.  a1425(a1400) Paul.Epist.(Corp-C 32)   Rom.4.11:  A tokne he took of circumcysioun þat it be sygnacle of ri3twisnesse, þat is, hafande a similitude of a tokned thyng þat he be fadyr of alle lefande.  a1450(c1410) Lovel. Grail (Corp-C 80)   38.62:  A prest..lifte vpe his hond, and the signe of the Croys Made..Nasciens knew that he hol was Be the signacle of þe Man In that plas.  c1475(a1449) Lydg. Aesop (Hrl 2251)   696:  The name of God, ordeyned to impresse, Is the signacle of the celestial seale..And who that euer mysvsith it in falsenesse..he to God doth opinly treason.  c1475(a1449) Lydg. 15 O's (LdMisc 683)   267:  O sothfast Iesü callyd cleer merour Of trowthe, of love..Signacle [vr. Sinacle] and sel, patent and protectour.  a1500(1439) Lydg. Sts.AA (Lnsd 699)   3128:  Thei wern markid with a cros In ther forehed..With that victorious tryumphal signacle.  a1500 Imit.Chr.(Dub 678)  140/2:  This grace is a li3t supernaturall & a special 3ifte of god, and a propre signacle of þe chosen children of god.

(b)  (1440) Capgr. St.Norb.(Hnt HM 55)   894:  O þou wrecch onworþi [the devil]..þat were so dere, For Goddis signacule [L signaculum similitudinis Dei] for soth þou were, And wit3 pride þou lost þat faire figure.

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