Götz Kluge

Götz Kluge

Posted on 09/21/2014

Photo taken on September 21, 2014

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English Literature & Poetry English Literature & Poetry

The Hunting of the Snark The Hunting of the Snark


Lewis Carroll
The Hunting og the Snark

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Snarking or Gnashing

Snarking or Gnashing
See also: www.academia.edu/10407335/Scratching_or_Scranching_is_not_quite_like_Snarking_or_Gnashing_1866_

SERMONS IN STONES. -- On the road from Salisbury to Lymington is a milestone which is affirmed by very many to render an audible sound to those who are passing by it. It has been placed on a mound of earth by which it is so far elevated that the top of the stone is about even with the head of the pedestrian traveller. This milestone is situated in that part of the road which traverses the New Forest, near to the village called Burley.

Those who assert that they hear the sound all concur in representing it to be a kind of scratching or scranching, like the edge of an iron-tipped, or the sole of a roughly-nailed, boot being harshly drawn across the gravel. I will not quite compare it to a certain kind of snarking or gnashing, in which the undercrushed Enceladus may hideously indulge as an indication to every passer that he or she is most virulently discontented with such an assignment of abode; because the good Emperor Marcus so sweetly reminds us that the two rows of our teeth were given us for mutual concurrence, not for discord. About as numerous, however, and quite as worthy of credence, are they who maintain that they hear this uncouth salute, as they who deny its utterance. I should state that the former are generally those who are remarkable for having a keen sense of hearing.

From whatever cause, then, this irelike crassitude of restless wayside compliment may arise whether by reverberation or by subterraneous concitation I may be allowed, perhaps, to make this narrative the basis of two queries.
1. Is this a singular instance of saxeous vocality; or has a similar cippous eccentricity been observable in other parts of the kingdom ? A collateral suit with this I would make the elucidation of the cause.
2. The auricular faculty is enormously different in power in different subjects. It is almost incredible at what a vast distance a sound can be heard by one hearer which is utterly inaudible to another. It will open, I think, a most interesting vein of communication in your columns if, in deed, the matter is new to them if I ask for any details; which many will, no doubt, be able to furnish, which may assist in determining the question At how great a distance has the human voice been satisfactorily proved to have been so heard that words articulately uttered have been plainly distinguished ? To what distance, also, has its inarticulate utterance, such as the huntsman's hail, been recognised ? I am, myself, any other than a Crichton, yet my own experiment gives that I can be heard, when reading, at the distance of a furlong.

Source: Notes and Queries (1866-09-29), Series 3, Volume 10, p. 248
doi: 10.1093/nq/s3-X.248.248-f

Götz Kluge
Götz Kluge
This article often is said to contain the first printed mentioning of "snarking".
4 years ago. Edited 3 years ago.
Götz Kluge
Götz Kluge
So, "snarking" stands for a sound. That would be consistent with assumptions that the word "Snark" has its origins in mid-19th century Low Germanic "snarke" and Swedish "snarka", which means snoring or snorting.
4 years ago. Edited 4 years ago.
Götz Kluge
Götz Kluge
This depiction of the Snark is "authorized" by Lewis Carroll. But it only shows a dream Snark.
4 years ago.