a brisk little business laugh


Hi guys,

I've come across this phrase in a novel by Christopher Isherwood, titled 'Prater Violet', and I wonder about the meaning and implication of the word "business" therein. Here is the context: a guy phones to the protagonist, asks the protagonist whether he's been to Blackpool, then the story goes on like this:
'There must be some mistake . . .' I got ready to hang up on him. 'I've never been to Blackpool in my life.'
'Splendid!' The voice uttered a brisk little business laugh. . . .

Is "business" a kind of euphemism for something else, like something of artificiality of a laugh?
  • Ryan5556

    New Member
    I think you're right, it does make it sound like there's a bit of artificiality to his laugh, that would be supported by the use of the words "brisk" and "little". But I think it also indicates that his laugh is restrained in a way, proper and "business"-like. Like he's laughing for the formality of it perhaps.
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