#171 By & Large

#171 By & Large
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How “by & large” sailed into the English language 

Many phras­es are incor­rect­ly assumed to be of nau­ti­cal ori­gin just because they sound like mariners’ lingo.

How­ev­er, “by & large” real­ly was a nau­ti­cal term which orig­i­nat­ed in the days of sail­ing ships.

Today the phrase “by & large” means
on the whole
gen­er­al­ly speak­ing
all things considered

But cen­turies ago “by & large” referred to sail­ing into the wind & off it, as explained below, mak­ing it eas­i­er to steer the ship. By the ear­ly 1700s the phrase had been broad­ened to mean
in one direc­tion & anoth­er
& even­tu­al­ly today’s most com­mon def­i­n­i­tion
in gen­er­al

Two separate terms, not one single phrase

The fol­low­ing ety­mol­o­gy of the phrase “by & large” is by Gary Mar­tin at his fas­ci­nat­ing web­site phras​es​.org​.uk:

To get a sense of the orig­i­nal mean­ing of the phrase we need to under­stand the nau­ti­cal terms ‘by’ & ‘large’. ‘Large’ is eas­i­er, so we’ll start there. When the wind is blow­ing from some com­pass point behind a ship’s direc­tion of trav­el then it is said to be ‘large’. Sailors have used this term for cen­turies; for exam­ple, this piece from Richard Hak­luyt’s The Prin­ci­pall Nav­i­ga­tions, Voiages, & Dis­cov­er­ies of the Eng­lish Nation, 1591:

When the wind came larg­er we waied anchor & set saile.”

When the wind is in that favourable ‘large’ direc­tion the largest square sails may be set & the ship is able to trav­el in what­ev­er down­wind direc­tion the cap­tain sees fit.

By’ is a rather more dif­fi­cult con­cept for land­lub­bers like me. In sim­pli­fied terms it means ‘in the gen­er­al direc­tion of’. Sailors would say that to be ‘by the wind’ is to face into the wind or with­in six com­pass points of it.

The ear­li­est known ref­er­ence to ‘by and large’ in print is from Samuel Sturmy, in The Mariners Mag­a­zine, 1669:

Thus you see the ship han­dled in fair weath­er & foul, by & learge.”

To sail ‘by & large’ required the abil­i­ty to sail not only as ear­li­er square-​rigged ships could do, that is, down­wind, but also against the wind. At first sight, & for many non-​sailors I’m sure sec­ond & third sight too, it seems impos­si­ble that a sail­ing ship could progress against the wind. They can though. The physics behind this is bet­ter left to oth­ers. Suf­fice it to say that it involves the use of tri­an­gu­lar sails, which act like aero­plane wings & pro­vide a force that drags the ship side­ways against the wind; by this tech­nique & by care­ful angling of the rud­der the ship can make progress towards the wind.

The 19th cen­tu­ry wind­jam­mers like Cut­ty Sark were able to main­tain progress ‘by & large’ even in bad wind con­di­tions by the use of many such aero­dy­nam­ic tri­an­gu­lar sails & large crews of able sea­men.
Copy­right © Gary Mar­tin | Con­tact Gary Martin


I am grate­ful to Gary Mar­tin for cre­at­ing phras​es​.org​.uk, the inter­net’s largest pub­lic resource for such mate­r­i­al. Not only does he define each phrase, but goes deep into its etymology. 

My father, Andrew DeS­i­mone, was fas­ci­nat­ed with words, since he immi­grat­ed from Sici­ly & want­ed to mas­ter the Eng­lish lan­guage (which he did with a slight Ital­ian accent). I remem­ber our huge red Web­ster’s dic­tio­nary — it must have been six inch­es thick & well-worn.

In fact, it was when Dad­dy sat me on his lap when I was maybe 4 or 5 years old, & point­ed out the words in a book, that I took an inter­est in words, too. How­ev­er, I was more fas­ci­nat­ed in the let­ter­forms, & that’s what start­ed my let­ter­ing, typog­ra­phy & graph­ic design career. Here’s a sto­ry about that.


Production notes for #171 By & Large:
Original size: 20x30 inches
Program: Adobe Photoshop
Ampersand: Goudy Oldstyle (altered)
Credits:
Photo: Iurii, deposit​pho​to​.com
Facts: phras​es​.org​.uk—interesting bio of author Gary Martin

Note: &” replaces “and” in most or all text, including quotations, headlines & titles.
You may repost the image & article. Please credit Amper​Art​.com.
To download a full-​size high-​resolution 11x17-​inch poster suitable for printing & framing, click on the image.

Visit DesimoneDesign.com

Chaz DeS­i­mone, design­er & typog­ra­ph­er, is the cre­ator of Amper­Art & own­er of Des­i­mone Design. He was adding ser­ifs to let­ters when he was just a lit­tle brat scrib­bling on walls. Now he’s a big brat & his entire career is design, so long as each project requires the most sophis­ti­cat­ed, log­i­cal, cap­ti­vat­ing results. Con­tact him at chaz@​desimonedesign.​com.

Thank you for sub­scrib­ing to Chaz’s per­son­al design project, Amper­Art. Men­tion you read all the way to the bot­tom here & receive a tru­ly incred­i­ble graph­ic design gift when you con­tact Chaz.


Chaz sez...
Want more?
Rants & raves mostly about design, sometimes about the universe.
An occasional bit of useful advice.
Read the blog:
des​i​monedesign​.com/​c​h​a​z​-​sez
Desimone Design
Desimone Design

#168 Preserve, Protect & Defend

#168 Preserve, Protect & Defend
#168 Preserve, Protect & Defend
Click image to view full size or download poster for gallery-​quality printing & framing.
This is a high-​resolution pdf & may take a few minutes to download.
Find printing tips & framing ideas here.

The Presidential Oath of Office

Every pres­i­dent of the Unit­ed States has recit­ed the oath of office as the offi­cial start of their pres­i­den­cy.

The oath is found in Arti­cle II of the Con­sti­tu­tion. It con­tains 35 words and goes as fol­lows:

“I do solemn­ly swear (or affirm) that I will faith­ful­ly exe­cute the Office of Pres­i­dent of the Unit­ed States, and will to the best of my abil­i­ty, pre­serve, pro­tect and defend the Con­sti­tu­tion of the Unit­ed States.“

George Wash­ing­ton report­ed­ly added the words “so help me God” to the oath, and it has been said at the end by every pres­i­dent except Theodore Roo­sevelt.

All but two pres­i­dents placed their hand on a Bible while say­ing the oath, accord­ing to the Joint Con­gres­sion­al Com­mit­tee on Inau­gur­al Cer­e­monies. John Quin­cy Adams took the oath upon a book of the law. Theodore Roo­sevelt did not use a Bible for his first inau­gu­ra­tion.

In 2013, Pres­i­dent Barack Oba­ma took the oath using two Bibles, one owned by Abra­ham Lin­coln and the oth­er by Mar­tin Luther King Jr.

The vice president-​elect takes a slight­ly dif­fer­ent, longer oath, which is also uti­lized for mem­bers of Con­gress and some oth­er fed­er­al employ­ees:

“I do solemn­ly swear (or affirm) that I will sup­port and defend the Con­sti­tu­tion of the Unit­ed States against all ene­mies, for­eign and domes­tic; that I will bear true faith and alle­giance to the same; that I take this oblig­a­tion freely, with­out any men­tal reser­va­tion or pur­pose of eva­sion; and that I will well and faith­ful­ly dis­charge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter: So help me God.”
 Con­cept & Design

A friend of mine says I swear a lot, so I decid­ed to just leave the word “swear” in the oath and elim­i­nate the option­al “affirm.” Who knows, I just may become pres­i­dent some day, so I will have my oath already edit­ed. My plat­form will, of course, be nude beach­es across the land (well, along the coasts, any­way). And go back to 50 cent admis­sion to Dis­ney­land with A, B, C, D and those cov­et­ed E tick­ets.

The col­ors in this piece are offi­cial col­ors of the Amer­i­can flag: “Old Glo­ry Red” and a some­what dark­er ver­sion of “Old Glo­ry Blue,” both of which are sim­i­lar to the orig­i­nal dyed wool flag.

And of course, the word “and” has been replaced with our friend, the ampersand.

May the coming years bring hope, health, healing and happiness to the United States of America.


Production notes for #168 Preserve, Protect & Defend:
Original size: 20x30 inches

Programs: Adobe Illustrator
Font, text: Goudy
Font, ampersand: Goudy
Credits: The Presidential Oath of Office article adapted from ABC News
You may repost the image & article. Please credit Amper​Art​.com.
To download a full-​size high-​resolution 11x17-​inch poster suitable for printing & framing, click on the image.

Visit DesimoneDesign.com

Chaz DeS­i­mone is the cre­ator of Amper­Art and own­er of Des­i­mone Design. He was adding ser­ifs to let­ters when he was just a lit­tle brat scrib­bling on walls. Now he’s a big brat and his entire career is design, so long as each project requires the most sophis­ti­cat­ed, log­i­cal, cap­ti­vat­ing results. Con­tact him at chaz@​desimonedesign.​com.

Thank you for sub­scrib­ing to Chaz’s per­son­al design project, Amper­Art. Men­tion you read all the way to the bot­tom here and receive a tru­ly incred­i­ble graph­ic design gift when you con­tact Chaz.

Chaz sez...
Want more?
Rants & raves mostly about design, sometimes about the universe.
An occasional bit of useful advice.
Read the blog:
des​i​monedesign​.com/​c​h​a​z​-​sez
Desimone Design
Desimone Design

#167 Restore & Rebuild

#167 Restore & Rebuild
#167 Restore & Rebuild
Click image to view full size or download poster for gallery-​quality printing & framing.
This is a high-​resolution pdf & may take a few minutes to download.
Find printing tips & framing ideas here.

2021: Restore & Rebuild Our World

Restore health.

Rebuild the economy.

Restore social­iz­ing.

Rebuild lives.

Let’s restore & rebuild to make our plan­et & its peo­ple even bet­ter than it was pre-pandemic.

Concept & Design

There is only one con­cept for the com­ing year. We must wipe out the virus and rebuild the world. 

But the con­cept for the design of Amper­Art 167 Restore & Rebuild is meld­ing the numer­als of the year with the words that will define 2021.

The back­ground start­ed out as the floor­print we’ve seen all over the place for social dis­tanc­ing 6 feet apart. I toyed with it, and real­ized it looks like riv­ets. How appro­pri­ate, to sym­bol­ize, although abstract­ly, Rosie the Riveter.

The col­ors were inspired by Pan­tone Col­ors of the Year 2021. That’s right, they intro­duced 2 new col­ors again this year. We could prob­a­bly use an extra hun­dred or so, to wipe out the dark­ness of the past year. But these two col­ors, Illu­mi­nat­ing and Ulti­mate Gray, are a beau­ti­ful com­bi­na­tion for this design. The yel­low is tru­ly upbeat as the sun’s glow at dawn, and the gray is a beau­ti­ful com­ple­ment. (I think I know what col­or I’m going to repaint my studio.)

Happy New Year 2021

Please leave a com­ment below.


Production notes for #167 Restore & Rebuild:
Original size: 20x30 inches

Programs: Adobe Illustrator
Font, text: Din Schrift
Font, ampersand: Bahnschrift
Credits: Colors inspired by Pantone 2021 Colors of the Year
Note: &” replaces “and” in most or all text, including quotations, headlines & titles.
You may repost the image & article. Please credit Amper​Art​.com.
To download a full-​size high-​resolution 11x17-​inch poster suitable for printing & framing, click on the image.

Visit DesimoneDesign.com

Chaz DeS­i­mone is the cre­ator of Amper­Art and own­er of Des­i­mone Design. He was adding ser­ifs to let­ters when he was just a lit­tle brat scrib­bling on walls. Now he’s a big brat and his entire career is design, so long as each project requires the most sophis­ti­cat­ed, log­i­cal, cap­ti­vat­ing results. Con­tact him at chaz@​desimonedesign.​com.

Thank you for sub­scrib­ing to Chaz’s per­son­al design project, Amper­Art. Men­tion you read all the way to the bot­tom here and receive a tru­ly incred­i­ble graph­ic design gift when you con­tact Chaz.

Chaz sez...
Want more?
Rants & raves mostly about design, sometimes about the universe.
An occasional bit of useful advice.
Read the blog:
des​i​monedesign​.com/​c​h​a​z​-​sez
Desimone Design
Desimone Design