Tuesday, September 04, 2012

word of the day: latitudinarian

The word of the day is latitudinarian:

< Latin lātitūdin-, lātitūdo latitude n., after trinitarian, etc.
 A. adj.
Allowing, favouring, or characterized by latitude in opinion or action, esp. in matters of religion; not insisting on strict adherence to or conformity with an established code, standard, formula, etc.; tolerating free thought or laxity of belief on religious questions; characteristic of the latitudinarians (see B.).
B. n.

One who practises or favours latitude in thought, action, or conduct, esp. in religious matters; spec. one of those divines of the English Church in the 17th century, who, while attached to episcopal government and forms of worship, regarded them as things indifferent; hence, one who, though not a sceptic, is indifferent as to particular creeds and forms of church government or worship. (OED)

"Maria Tatar seems to be inheriting the position of dean of fairy tales, and in her “Annotated Brothers Grimm” (2004)—this is one of Norton’s series of copiously annotated classics—she apparently feels that she can afford to be nice to everyone. This makes some of the notes in her edition bewilderingly latitudinarian—she nods to Zipes, to Bettelheim, to Gilbert and Gubar."

 - Joan Acocella, "Once Upon a Time: The lure of the fairy tale", The New Yorker 23 July 2012

I'm not convinced "latitudinarian" was the word she wanted there.

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