Comment at Arrant Pedantry
Many people fail to use the word hard correctly….
A total absence of any mention in usage guides
Garner's Modern American Usage, Bryan Garner (Google Books)
The earliest dictionaries - 'hard word' dictionaries
Table Alphabeticall, con-
tayning and teaching the true
writing and understanding of hard
usuall English words, borrowed from
the Hebrew, Greeke, Latine
or French &c.
interpreting all such
of Whatever Language, now used
in our refined English Tonguee
explaining the difficult terms that are used in ...
Many Thousands of Hard Words ...
Such Hard Words of whatever
language as are at present used in the
English Tongue, with their Etymologies,
Hard = difficult - a literary / historical perspective
c.1400, apparently a back-formation from difficulty. French has difficile, Latin difficilis. Of persons, "hard to please," from 1580s.
Any hard Lesson that may do thee good
Much Ado about Nothing
John Arbuthnot 1667-1735, quoted by Samuel Johnson
A Dictionary of the English Language, Samuel Johnson, 1755
A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson.
Edited by Brandi Besalke
Sermons of Master John Calvin, Upon the Booke of Job, Jean Calvin Impensis Thomae Woodcocke, 1584 (Google Books)
Loves labors lost: the first quarto, William Shakespeare, 1598 (Google Books)
The Christian Life, from Its Beginning, to Its Its Consummation in Glory, John Scott 1683 (Google Books)
Idioms and collocations
Hard to say
Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London, 1673 (Google Books)
The Spectator, No 282, January 1712 (Google Books)
Religious Perfection, Or, A Third Part of the Enquiry, Richard Lucas - 1704 (Google Books)
Fast sermons to Parliament 1648 (Google Books)
For an explanation of these fast sermons see (The History of Parliament)
The Compleat Angler, Izaak Walton, London 1653 (Google Books)
The Antijacobin Review and True Churchman's Magazine, 1818 (Google Books)
The pay is small when "through";
For Civil Service what a "cram"
And competition too!
Rhymes of the Times, C. J. H. Cassels - 1891 (Google Books)
A hard act to follow
- Le granit est une roche dure.
Granite is a hard rock.
- Le sommet est dur à atteindre.
The summit is hard to reach.
- Prof: I'm sorry, can I put this into some sort of perspective, when I caught Gerald in '68 he was completely wild
- Gerald: Wild, I was absolutely livid ..
Final final word
- Jill (romantically): Oh Jack, I can feel something between us.
- Jack: I'm sorry.
- Jill (innocently): It's getting harder to resist.
- Jack (not so innocently): ... it's getting harder.
- Jill: I can't believe how big our love has grown.
- Jack (well,you get the idea): ... how big it's grown.
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- A Dictionary of the English Language: A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson. Edited by Brandi Besalke - Page View, Page 966
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- Fast Sermons to parliament - The History of Parliament