be horrid

LV4-26

Senior Member
Hello,
Just a doubt as to the meaning of horrid in this sentence.

I sat in the sofa drinking scotch and watching people being horrid to each other on TV. It's all they ever seem to do on TV.

In general and especially in this particular context, does being horrid refer to speech or to deeds. Does it mean that they say horrid things or that they do horrid things ? Or both ?

(I bet he's watching Dallas or something ;) )

Thks a lot
Jean-Michel
 
  • Artrella

    Banned
    BA
    Spanish-Argentina
    LV4-26 said:
    Hello,
    Just a doubt as to the meaning of horrid in this sentence.

    I sat in the sofa drinking scotch and watching people being horrid to each other on TV. It's all they ever seem to do on TV.

    In general and especially in this particular context, does being horrid refer to speech or to deeds. Does it mean that they say horrid things or that they do horrid things ? Or both ?

    (I bet he's watching Dallas or something ;) )

    Thks a lot
    Jean-Michel


    Hi J-M!

    I think in this case it means "behaving in a horrid way" :eek:
     

    Kelly B

    Curmodgeratrice
    USA English
    It's a British expression rather than an American one, but I think it means "behaving badly", which would cover both speech and actions, perhaps with an emphasis on speech.
     

    Edwin

    Senior Member
    USA / Native Language: English
    I would guess that the only acquaintance most Americans have had with the word "horrid'' is from the little poem learned in school:

    There was a little girl

    There was a little girl who had a little curl
    Right in the middle of her forehead
    When she was good, she was very, very good
    And when she was bad she was horrid.

    ---written by the American poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882).
     

    Amityville

    Senior Member
    English UK
    Edwin - it just struck me Longfellow must have pronounced forehead forrid - how do you pronounce it ? (I was taught the rhyme with forehead pronounced fore-head)

    Another quote:-

    "He sat on the bridge with his feet in the water."
    Longfellow.
     

    cuchuflete

    Senior Member
    EEUU-inglés
    Jean-Michel,
    As soon as I read the words about people being horrid to one another, I recalled the movie "Who's afraid of Virginia Woolfe" with Richard Burton and E. Taylor. They were superb at being horrid to one another.

    un saludo,
    C.
     

    panjandrum

    Senior Member
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Amityville said:
    Edwin - it just struck me Longfellow must have pronounced forehead forrid - how do you pronounce it ? (I was taught the rhyme with forehead pronounced fore-head)

    Another quote:-

    "He sat on the bridge with his feet in the water."
    Longfellow.
    Longfellow, me, ......
    Well, I sense a tiny vowel difference between the i of horrid and the ea of forehead, but it is not enough to disturb the sense of rhyme.

    [On the subject of rhymes and poetry, I was well into my twenties before I (a rhotic speaker) realised that Eeyore was meant to rhyme with Heehaw:eek: ]
     

    Sophie Elizabeth

    Senior Member
    UK, English
    Edwin - it just struck me Longfellow must have pronounced forehead forrid - how do you pronounce it ? (I was taught the rhyme with forehead pronounced fore-head)

    When I was a child and under the influence of my parents, I always pronounced it "forrid" but now I would always say "fore-head" - big difference. Maybe an IE (Irish English!) and BE difference, Panjandrum?
     

    la grive solitaire

    Senior Member
    United States, English
    Edwin said:
    I would guess that the only acquaintance most Americans have had with the word "horrid'' is from the little poem learned in school:
    Hmm...That might be true in spoken AE, but I've seen it quite a bit in written AE, sometimes to be humorous (horrid homonyms), but most often to describe a dire situation that is beyond horrible, as if horrid were the superlative of horrible. ;)
     

    Edwin

    Senior Member
    USA / Native Language: English
    Amityville said:
    Edwin - it just struck me Longfellow must have pronounced forehead forrid - how do you pronounce it ? (I was taught the rhyme with forehead pronounced fore-head)

    Another quote:-

    "He sat on the bridge with his feet in the water."
    Longfellow.


    I note that the first listed pronunciation for forehead in Merrian-Webster Online indeed has it rhyming with horrid:

    Main Entry: hor·rid
    Pronunciation: 'hor-&d, 'här-

    Main Entry: fore·head
    Pronunciation: 'fär-&d, 'for-; 'fOr-"hed, 'for- also -"ed

    As for Longfellow jokes, I will not mention the corniest one I know. :)
     

    panjandrum

    Senior Member
    English-Ireland (top end)
    OED pronunciation lists various squiggles that I am not able to copy and paste for you. But there is no doubt that the preferred squiggles for forehead look identical, apart from the initial squiggle, to those for horrid.

    Ah, the Longfellow on the bridge quote was a joke. I'm glad I didn't embarrass myself by asking about that:eek:

    He was the Hiawatha poet wasn't he? In my A-level applied maths exam Question 2 started with:
    Swift of foot was Hiawatha;
    He could shoot an arrow from him,
    And run forward with such fleetness,
    That the arrow fell behind him!
    Strong of arm was Hiawatha;
    He could shoot ten arrows upward,
    Shoot them with such strength and swiftness,
    That the tenth had left the bow-string
    Ere the first to earth had fallen!


    Half the candidates queried the paper thinking it was Eng Lit.
    Others of us read the whole question, which went on to say that if he took 2 seconds to load and fire his bow, how fast could he run? - or something similar:)
     
    Top