Friday, 6 March 2009

Dastardly

A dastard is a coward, or a pusillanimous individual; although 'dastardly' seems to have taken on a more generic, negative 'bad person' vibe. But what's nice about this synonym for coward (according to the dictionaries) is that 'it is derived most likely from Old Norse d├Žstr, exhausted'. There's something splendidly psychologically true about the notion that cowardice is not a sort of Falstaffian force of character, and more a function of the myriad forms of exhaustion.

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