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12:10 AM
@MetaEd Dude there are children listening
12:22 AM
@tchrist Gratias tibi ago!
@Laurel ++year
12:33 AM
@Cerberus I heard a "new" word today: paludification, and thought of you.
Word of the day: contouring. "The technique or practice of using makeup, typically foundation or bronzer, in such a way as to accentuate or enhance the shape or structure of the face."
It mystifies me that anyone has the time or patience for this. But you do you.
@Laurel It that to be read as Happy year++ or as Happy ++year?
Paludification is the most common process by which peatlands in the boreal zone are formed. == Formation == The process is characterized by peat initialization on previously drier and vegetated habitats over inorganic soils, with no fully aquatic phase. Thus the paludification process includes a shift from forests, grassland or long exposed bare land to peatland. The initiation of this accumulation of organic matter (i.e. peat), can be controlled by both allogenic (i.e. external to the ecosystem) and autogenic (i.e. internal to the ecosystem) factors. The hydrological balance is critical for the...
@tchrist Yes, palus is swamp.
@alphabet Yeah it's horribly sticky on fur.
@Cerberus All these raccoon celebrities, using hair bleach to make their masks brighter, giving the rest of us body image issues.
@Cerberus Exactly. I therefore thought of it as "swampification". I guess it was harder to figure out how to turn bryology into a Latin ‑ification version, and you don't want to use mossification.
12:45 AM
@alphabet Racist.
Because moss is musgo in Spanish/Portuguese/Galician/Asturian, < LL muscus. I don't know the Classical Latin for it though.
@Cerberus I am neither black nor white, but striped and dappled.
My dictionary says muscus.
@alphabet I would say both, not neither.
@tchrist Considering the state of mind I was in when I posted that, neither. It's the most basic of arithmetic
Like me.
12:47 AM
Oh muscicolous is a known word.
@Laurel A state of inebriation?
We could certainly write about the muscification of the boreal forests, but I fear that when read aloud it would be heard as their moosification as the elephant deer moved in.
How in the world is musk from the Greek somehow having to do with mouse?
> From Middle English muske, borrowed from Old French musc, from Late Latin muscus, from Ancient Greek μόσχος (móskhos), from Middle Persian [script needed] (mwšk' /⁠mušk⁠/) whence Persian مشک‎ (mošk). Ultimately from Sanskrit मुष्क (muṣka, “testicle”), the shape of the gland of animals secreting the substance being compared to human testicles, a diminutive of मूष् (mūṣ, “mouse”), the shape of human testicles being compared to mice, from Proto-Indo-European *muh₂s (“mouse”). Cognate with mouse.
Are musk deer therefore mouse deer or moss deer, or just stinky deer?
Muskrats are fragrant.
French had musket rats!
> < musk n. + rat n.1 Compare French rat musqué (1617 in form rat musquet). Compare mushrat n.
Muskrat range.
Ah, muscusrat in Dutch.
They eat dikes.
They're like anti-beavers. :)
So "your mice" used to be a common euphemism for testicles.
Oh, India!
12:59 AM
No me digas, huevón.
Not sure when the egg thing started, but it makes more sense to me than mice.
Different metaphors.
Deer testicles were dowsets once upon a time.
@Cerberus I played a drinking game last night yeah
Did you have a good time?
1:04 AM
I bought this game at the store like 4 years ago and never got the chance to use it before yesterday. It's all about mixing different drinks together to create some almost unpalatable concoction
Reminds me of junior high school.
Blossom Puzzle, January 1
Letters: D L N E S U Y
My score: 244 points
My longest word: 11 letters
🏵 🌻 💐 💮 🌼 🌹 🌺 🌷 🌸 🏵 🌻
Probably the grossest drink of the night was a shot of wine plus fireball, which I suggested to someone and she decided to do it even tho she could have mixed something else lol
@tchrist I swear, I'm both old and mature enough to be a moderator lol
We had some "mixing experiments" go so horribly wrong that I still cannot abide certain aromas.
Sloe gin.
= sleedoorn gin
1:14 AM
Oh, sleedoorn.
Yes, sloes are a kind of prune/plum.
One of those mysterious plants (bushes?) that one never remembers.
Sloe gin is een vruchtenlikeur die is verkregen door sleedoornbessen (ook sleepruimen genoemd) te macereren in gin en eventueel sleepruimensap toe te voegen. "Sloe" is een Engelse naam voor de sleedoorn (Prunus spinosa). Aan de likeur mogen natuurlijke aromastoffen toegevoegd worden. Het alcoholgehalte van sloe gin bedraagt ten minste 25 vol %.
In Brandon Sanderson's fantasy series The Stormlight Saga, one of the characters was given the wartime moniker "the Blackthorn", which is the other common name for the sloe plant, and perhaps the better known.
> The Blackthorn tree is esoterically known as both the Mother of the Woods and the Dark Crone of the Woods.

Species: Prunus spinosa

Family: Rosaceae (Rose family)
Ogham: Straif (ST), a Chieftain Tree
Scots Gaelic: Draighionn
Irish Gaelic: Draighean
Welsh: Draenen ddu
Somewhat related to the meidoorn?
We had the problem that most of the combinations were actually pretty good, so we completely missed the aspect of the game where people refuse to drink
1:21 AM
We used sloe gin to make tequila sunrises with. It was not a good idea.
We did not have gin at the table
@Cerberus Inherently so.
No tequila either
@Cerberus Nearly all the thorny plants seem to wind up landing in the rose family, both hawthorn and blackthorn alike.
1:22 AM
Oh, roses.
Tequila sunrises were big in the 70s.
Even raspberries?
BTW, hawthorn is also known as whitethorn.
Raspberries are in rubus.
Kingdom:    Plantae
Clade:      Tracheophytes
Clade:      Angiosperms
Clade:      Eudicots
Clade:      Rosids
Order:      Rosales
Family:     Rosaceae
Subfamily:  Rosoideae
Tribe:      Rubeae
Genus:      Rubus
These are all in Rosaceae.
@tchrist And May thorn?
@tchrist OK very rosy.
@Cerberus Yes, it's a kind of hawthorne, or can be.
1:27 AM
And I see blackberries are also in rubo.
Well declined.
> Other common names include may, mayblossom, maythorn, (as the plant generally flowers in May) quickthorn, whitethorn, motherdie, and haw.
Every state seems to have its own hawthorn species.
The two things to keep separate in your mind are rubus vs ribes. The former are blackberries and raspberries in the prickly rose family. The latter are currants and gooseberries in the sassy saxifrage family.
And cacti might have come from roses, long ago.
But not thistles?
Thistles are mostly asters.
Not roses?
The aster family is different from the rose family. The cacti have their own family.
If you go up high enough, you can find a clade that contains all of these.
> The asterids, Berberidopsidales, Santalales, and Caryophyllales form the superasterids clade.[2] This is one of three groups that compose the Pentapetalae (core eudicots minus Gunnerales),[3] the others being Dilleniales and the superrosids (Saxifragales and rosids).[2]
But we stop having specific names for clades at arbitrary branch points.
Or rather, the clades have names but not all clades at that level are called an "order" or a "family" or a "class" etc.
1:44 AM
Very complicated systems.
So many layers.
> Many scientists believe the rose cactus is the ancestor of the Cactaceae family, and other cacti lost their leaves as they adapted to dry conditions
That's what I was thinking of. The rose cactus may be basal to the group. It does have leaves.
Rhodocactus grandifolius (rose cactus; syn. Pereskia grandifolia) is a species of cactus native to eastern and southern Brazil. Like all species in the genus Rhodocactus and unlike most cacti, it has persistent leaves. It was first described in 1819. It is grown as an ornamental plant and has naturalized outside its native range. == Description == Although Rhodocactus grandifolius is a cactus by classification, it takes the form of a shrub or small tree, 2–5 m (7–16 ft) in height, exceptionally 10 m (33 ft). Young twigs are green or reddish with conspicuous white spots marking the stomata. It has...
We think all the cacti started in Gondwanaland. The explosion of the flowering plants makes early relationships other than clear.
I am glad for it.
@tchrist Oh, it is "we" now.
The rose cactus doesn't look very much like a cactus. Do they call it that only because of its lineage?
@Cerberus Presumably. Do you know what a "Christmas cactus" is? It never seemed like a cactus to me, either.
1:52 AM
Hmm I have heard of plants called Christmassy.
But I don't remember.
Oh, we have kerstroos in Dutch.
@Cerberus Well, the Old World has no cacti. Therefore they originated in the New World. The question is when they spread from South to North or vice versa.
Helleborus niger, commonly called Christmas rose or black hellebore, is an evergreen perennial flowering plant in the buttercup family, Ranunculaceae. It is poisonous. Although the flowers resemble wild roses (and despite its common name), Christmas rose does not belong to the rose family (Rosaceae). == Taxonomy == The black hellebore was described by Carl Linnaeus in volume one of his Species Plantarum in 1753. The Latin specific name niger (black) may refer to the colour of the roots. There are two subspecies: H. niger subsp. niger and H. niger subsp. macranthus, which has larger flowers (up...
Oh that's a hellebore.
Schlumbergera is a small genus of cacti with six to nine species found in the coastal mountains of south-eastern Brazil. These plants grow on trees or rocks in habitats that are generally shady with high humidity, and can be quite different in appearance from their desert-dwelling cousins. Most species of Schlumbergera have stems which resemble leaf-like pads joined one to the other and flowers which appear from areoles at the joints and tips of the stems. Two species have cylindrical stems more similar to other cacti. Common names for these cacti generally refer to their flowering season. In the...
@tchrist Ahh and nobody outside your bicontinent thinks about them.
I was thinking of the cactus not the buttercup.
1:53 AM
@tchrist Lovely name.
@Cerberus It's funny. Being a "continent" is a political matter. The Iberian count totals only six not seven as ours does, because to them America runs from Alaska down to Tierra del Fuego as one continent.
@Cerberus I hate it when they do that for binomials, use letters that don't go together in Latin.
> Lemaire noted the similarity of his Schlumbergera epiphylloides to a species first described as Epiphyllum truncatum by Adrian Hardy Haworth in 1819, but did not accept that the two species should be included in the same genus. In 1890, Karl Moritz Schumann created the new genus Zygocactus,[5] transferring Epiphyllum truncatum to Zygocactus truncatus. Although he later placed it back in Epiphyllum, abandoning Zygocactus, the generic name Zygocactus continued to be widely used.
Any of those would have been better-named genera.
Also, I hate -oides taxa.
They're all -ish or -like something else, not their own thing. Dislike.
> The following genera are now synonyms of Schlumbergera (i.e. they have no species not moved into Schlumbergera):[9]

Epiphyllanthus A.Berger
Opuntiopsis Knebel (nom. inval.)
Zygocactus K.Schum.
Zygocereus Frič & Kreuz. (orth. var.)
Epiphyllum Pfeiff. but not Epiphyllum Haw.

The case of Epiphyllum is complex. In 1753, Carl Linnaeus created the genus Cactus.
Notice how all those synonymous genera scan better than does Schlumbergera.
> . Except for a relatively recent spread of Rhipsalis baccifera to parts of the Old World, cacti are plants of South America and mainly southern regions of North America. This suggests the family must have evolved after the ancient continent of Gondwana split into South America and Africa, which occurred during the Early Cretaceous, around 145 to 101 million years ago.[41] Precisely when after this split cacti evolved is less clear.
> However, the current species diversity of cacti is thought to have arisen only in the last 10–5 million years (from the late Miocene into the Pliocene). Other succulent plants, such as the Aizoaceae in South Africa, the Didiereaceae in Madagascar and the genus Agave in the Americas, appear to have diversified at the same time, which coincided with a global expansion of arid environments.
The one they mention having made it to the Old World is the mistletoe cactus.
Rhipsalis baccifera, commonly known as the mistletoe cactus, is an epiphytic cactus which originates from Central and South America, the Caribbean, and Florida. It is also found throughout the tropics of Africa and into Sri Lanka where it is known in Sinhala as nawahandi (නවහන්දි). This is the only cactus species naturally occurring outside the Americas. One hypothesis is that it was introduced to the Old World by migratory birds, long enough ago for the Old World populations to be regarded as distinct subspecies. An alternative hypothesis holds that the species initially crossed the Atlantic...
@tchrist: Thank you for supplying this astonishing factoid. If someone had asked me, "Where in the world do people traditionally serve applesauce with fried fish?" I would never have guessed "the U.S. Midwest." Just goes to show how little I know about this vast, complicated, and idiosyncratic country! — Sven Yargs 2 hours ago
I love Sven's manifest wisdom that comes from long years walking this earth. Less experienced people are prone to grand generalizations about the entire country when in fact they have no such actual knowledge.
2:17 AM
In Britain, as Wikipedia says, apple sauce is a traditional accompaniment to roast pork. I would never have thought of it as a children's snack, nor am I familiar with the 'nonsense' or 'flattery' meanings. — Kate Bunting 17 hours ago
Google tells me that British applesauce is somewhat different from what's served in the US, which might explain why it's mainly a children's food here.
TIL there are adults who regularly consume applesauce.
And apparently the British put a space between "apple" and "sauce"
I wonder if I should try an all-applesauce diet.
Also: TIL that Mott's Applesauce is produced by a subdivision of Keurig Dr Pepper Inc. Given the sugar content, I'd think it was made by Coca-Cola.
This is barely useful but I've seen it in the American South at a bucket of a national chain, rarely and only from travelers, which is one target demo. Odd memory of someone who then wanted apple butter instead of the upcharge for a side of applesauce, but some local people also regularly wanted apple cider vinegar instead of malt for the fish fry. Is there a U at latkes and applesauce, potato pancakes and fish? SOS Seasoned Advicelivresque 6 mins ago
A U?
2:32 AM
Q: One noun to describe the competence of a person in generating wealth

AlirezaPlease propose one noun to describe the competence of a person in generating wealth. The usage I have in mind is in the most fundamental, core, and conceptual sense of the word. For instance, evolutionarily women are attracted to men who have competence in generating wealth. I would say my intend...

> For instance, evolutionarily women are attracted to men who have competence in generating wealth.
> The potato pancake is much simpler, with nothing but raw grated potatoes, egg, and all-purpose flour. The latke, on the other hand, adds baking powder, matzo meal, and even a splash of milk, according to Cooktoria. Surprisingly, the potato pancake has a longer preparation time due to the simplicity of its batter.
You see, this is why I try to generate as little wealth as possible.
I also grew up with zucchini pancakes, so raw grated zucchini there en lieu de potatoes.
Part of me wants to edit that sentence out, but I'm just going to ignore it.
> apple-sauce. Impudence: mostly lower middle class: late C. 19–20. An elaboration of sauce, n. 1 ["Impudence, impertinence"].
The uppity lower middle class, no doubt.
3:06 AM
@tchrist I suspect sass is a descendant of sauce.
> "impudence, insolence," by 1835, a back-formation from sassy, and ultimately a colloquial pronunciation of sauce. Sass (n.) as a colloquial variant of sauce (n.) is attested by 1775. The verb sass, "to talk or reply saucily, speak impertinently to" is by 1856. Related: Sassed; sassing.
Yup. Etymonline says precisely that.
Somehow I didn't put the two together before.
Just kinda sorta never crossed my mind.
3:24 AM
@alphabet looks shifty
But I've eaten so much the past week, I have to try a little asceticism this week
Also lots of fried food tastes great but then you feel a little queasy afterwards
@Mitch You spelled greasy funnily.
3:56 AM
@tchrist Yes: I said bicontinent in order to be "in the middle".
@tchrist Agreed.
4:38 AM
oops the whole this page is out of kilter in my browser, and reloading does not help
FN+F5 helped
"Clay lies still, but blood’s a rover;
Breath’s a ware that will not keep.
Up, lads: when the journey’s over
There’ll be time enough to sleep."
2 hours later…
6:32 AM
[ SmokeDetector | MS ] Bad keyword in body, bad keyword in title, potentially bad keyword in body, potentially bad keyword in title (194): Abortion Pills In Dubai +971523788684 Cytotec For Sale In Dubai Misoprostol Kit Available In Dubai/Mifepristone Medicine In Dubai‭ by sangoma america3‭ on english.SE
2 hours later…
8:28 AM
> In the animal brain, a low magnesium level is known to weaken memory function. The researchers found that long-term memory in the transformer can be improved by mimicking the NMDA receptor.
5 hours later…
1:37 PM
@Mitch I hear they're making asceticism pastries now. Enjoy!
@CowperKettle The CSS files are failing to load for some reason.
@Robusto they're small and don't taste very good
Try putting cinnamon on them.
1:55 PM
Wordle 927 5/6

2:31 PM
@Robusto it's working really well now. I don't want to eat them at all.
@Robusto Available every Sunday at your local Catholic church.
@alphabet Seasoned with guilt and shame.
@Mitch NYT Spelling Bee now doesn't accept bole? WTF?
3:22 PM
I made this photo in the Moscow subway just now
A patriotic ushanka hat boy
It's cold here.
I've met my sister.
She has a lot of books again in the room she rents
Bought new ones, since she lost a lot in India.
English-language books, Hebrew-language books
Turns out she can read Hebrew psalms
Wordle 927 X/6

Wrong tactic...
And she composed a jocular poem in Hebrew about all workers in her company department. A rhyming poem, with ancient words and phrases like in the songs of David of the Old Testament
The department's Jewish director was very amused
I never knew she knows Hebrew so well
She is doing full synchronous interpreting now.
Not half-synchronous.
And self-studying C++
Is there some hereditary stuff that enables us to write rhyming short poems in foreign tongues?
I don't know
She knows more than me. Speaking-lefel Hindi, Bible-level Hebrew, synchronous-level English, and she studied Hungarian for several months. And Chinese for several months.
She said she likes doing textbook problems in C++
But she has severe bouts of depression, and some random spending problems. She wants some drug to prevent her from overspending
3:59 PM
1. A is different from B.
2. A is different than B.
3. A is different to B.

I grew up saying 2, reformed my way to 1, but now I'm hearing 3 a lot. It just feels wrong to me. Anybody else want to weith in?
4:12 PM
@Robusto 3 is UK, 2 is American, 1 happens in both.
I would use option 1 since that's the way it's in Russian
А отличается от Б
А отличается чем Б - wrong
I live in universes 1 and 2 equally often. But lately I've been slipping in and out of universe 3 and it's giving me quantum transportation headaches. Also in that (or is it this?) other world people drive on the other side of the road.
This year instead of writing up 'to do' lists, I'm going to make 'stop doing' lists to counterbalance the anxiety..
Which list does that go on?
Exactly. That's why I came here, in order to avoid deciding.
2 hours later…
6:04 PM
@Robusto The advantage of (2) is that it's more flexible; you can say "It was different than we expected" but not * "It was different from we expected."
1 hour later…
7:05 PM
Q: What activity does this "don't do this in a Thai taxi" image refer to?

uhohThe recent question Do taxi colors matter in Thailand? links to Amazing Planet's March 14, 2014 Bangkok’s Multi-Colored Taxis which includes a reproduction of the image shown and credited below. I think I know what all of these "don'ts" refer to except the one on the far left, shown separately cr...

This cracks me up
@M.A.R. No bullfighting. No rams. No oxen. No ox-carts. No vikings. No viking ox-drawn chariots fighting rams.
Not that fighting rams is bad, given that fighting rams are worse.
No ox cosplays by pacman ghosts
Þæt oðer hiw ys geciged zeuma, þæt ys gefeig on Englisc. Þis gefeg ys swyðe gelome on halgum gewritum.
Bless you
Eadiga synd þa þe rihtwysnissa hingreð.
7:20 PM
I too edinga kindred
It's interesting that both cows and donkeys are the stupid animals in Farsi.
Too easily cowed into asinine positions?
Do you serve burritos there, or are they more holy cows to you?
Donkey shote've not been a cow
@tchrist no burritos, we have a modicum of respect for our gastrointestines.
But no animal is holy I guess.
Not even Donkey Hodie?
That bear's face is kinda unsettling
He looks like a mob boss had his picture taken on the way to court
Most of the bad guys, and I mean guys, are not as good as animals. So, how does one actually insult them? Mostly, via excretions, right? Just saying...
7:33 PM
You . . . You sweat!
@M.A.R. ♫ Taco bells, taco bells / Tacos all the way ♫
8:07 PM
Here comes the Russian! Who remembers the movie The Russians Are Coming? It was sorta funny.
Today's camp motto: Don't forget to hide that pack of cigarettes.
@MetaEd You mean yesterday's camp motto. Today's is "Don't forget to hide that fentanyl."
8:36 PM
I'm having a kind of side effect that might be shameful to disclose but which may limit my lamotrigine dose to 50 mg/day.
Tried going from 50 to 75 mg, the effect started next day.
A rare effect, judging by databases.
@CowperKettle You probably mean "embarrassing" instead of "shameful."
@Robusto Yes, that is the right word. Embarassing.
Mild but persistent pain in a specific body part and/or two associated parts.
I wonder how it emerges.
The body is so complicated. A friend told me she felt nothing while taking high doses of lamotrigine, except having difficulties with finding words.
So she just ditched it. The only thing that midly helped her was a dopamine receptor agonist.
But women don't have these body parts anyway, or rather have them in different form.
9:19 PM
Word of the day: paregoric
Paregoric, or camphorated tincture of opium, also known as tinctura opii camphorata, is a traditional patent medicine known for its antidiarrheal, antitussive, and analgesic properties. According to Goodman and Gilman's 1965 edition, "Paregoric is a 4% opium tincture in which there is also benzoic acid, camphor, and anise oil. ... Paregoric by tradition is used especially for children."The term "paregoric" has also been used for boiled sweets which contained the substance, in particular the Army & Navy brand. == Properties == In 1944, two clinicians who evaluated the expectorant action of paregoric...
Never heard of it
9:30 PM
Looks like it was a nice calming preparation, maybe better than benzodiazepines
> All the other snug and airless depositories and hybernacles of life in the city of cities.
Noun: hibernaculum (plural hibernacula)
  1. (zoology) The place where a hibernating animal shelters for the winter.
  2. (botany) A bud, case, or protective covering that a plant uses to survive the challenging environmental conditions during a dormancy period.
  3. hībernāculum n (genitive hībernāculī); second declension
  4. winter quarters; a winter residence
  5. (in the plural) winter encampment
"hybernacles of life"
Withstanding the cold in the streets is a huckleberry over my persimmon, so I shall retire to my hybernacle of life.
Where in the fullness of time the whilom sour fruit harboring you shall become all the sweeter.
9:48 PM
Thou art indeed just, Lord, if I contend
With thee; but, sir, so what I plead is just.
Why do sinners’ ways prosper? and why must
Disappointment all I endeavour end?
(Said a programmer whose code has been unexpectedly halting time and again)
10:12 PM
Blossom Puzzle, January 2
Letters: A D E I L N T
My score: 284 points
My longest word: 10 letters
🌸 🌺 🏵 🌻 🌹 💮 🌷 🌼 💐 🌸
@jlliagre Tough one today ^
11:06 PM
@Robusto Keep those reefers hidden where you're sure that they will not be found. And be careful not to smoke them when the scoutmaster's around, or he only will insist that they be shared ... Be Prepared!
Q: Meaning of “panegoric”

QuixoticWhat does panegoric mean? Yes, it’s panegoric and not panegyric. The word is given in my module with the meaning “medicine that allays pain”, but I can’t find any reference. Is it correct?

@tchrist or someone with access to the OED, can you remind me what it says for the etymology of drake and gander?
It sounds like the situation is somewhat similar to English in that it doesn't really happen. Can you label the examples and add the etymology for people without knowledge of German? It's a bit suspicious to see words that are etymologically connected to both "drake" and "gander" when in my linked answer I discarded those words because of the OED. Also, it's not clear to me if "Katze/Kater" is an example or are from a common neutral(?) origin. — Laurel 5 hours ago
@Laurel Ok. I've been musing on the absence of an aestivaculum / aestivacle to go with the hybernacles of life.
"Dark is my day, whyles her fayre light I mis,
And dead my life that wants such lively blis."
@Laurel drake is less than perfectly clear.
> Middle English, first found in 13th cent., corresponding to northern and central German dialect draak, drake, drache (same sense); this is apparently the second element in Old High German antrahho, antrehho, Middle High German antreche, German enterich, 1599 endtrich, German dialect endedrach, antrek, antrecht, entrach, Swedish (from Low German) anddrake, the first element usually explained as eend, end, ente, and, ant, anut ‘duck’, though the Old High German forms offer difficulties. The compound form is not known in English.
But gander is from OE, not Middle English, and has a clearer pedigree, but not 100% clearer.
> A word inherited from Germanic.
The original stem is perhaps *ganron-, the d being a euphonic insertion between n and r as in thunder < Old English þunor. Outside of English the word is found only in Dutch, Low German and South German gander, Middle Low German ganre; the other Germanic languages show different formations, as German gänserich (earlier ganser), Old Norse gasse, Swedish gåse.
Although used as the masculine of goose n. (Old English gós < Old Germanic *gans-) there is some doubt whether it is etymologically cognate with that word. While goose represents an Old Aryan *gha
Noun: Ganser m (strong, genitive Gansers, plural Ganser)
  1. (Austria, sometimes Southern German) Alternative form of Ganter (“gander, male goose”)
And duck is also from OE, albeit not without some uncertainties.
> Probably formed within English, by derivation.
Old English duce (? dúce), < u- (or ū-) grade of *dúcan to duck v., dive; compare Danish duk-and lit. dive-duck (and = duck), Swedish dyk-fågel lit. dive-fowl, diver; and the synonyms under ducker n.1
The phonological history presents some difficulties, especially owing to uncertainty whether the Old English vowel was u or ú, and the development of the three Middle English types: dukke, duk, corresponding to modern duck; dōke, dook, corresponding to modern Scots duik /dʏk/ ; douke, dowke. Compare, for the forms, brook v.1 and dove n.; a
I don't understand what they mean about a prefix on duck to distinguish it from a drake.
> In its widest technical sense, the name includes the gadwalls, garganeys, golden-eyes, pintails, pochards, scaups, scoters, sheldrakes, shovellers, spoonbills, teal, whistlewings, widgeons, and other related groups; the geese and goosanders, though Anatidæ, are not usually called ‘ducks’.
"the geese and goosanders"??
And the answer is apparently that goosanders is another word for mergansers in Britain. They call all their birds weird names.
> Of obscure formation. If the first element is goose n., the word must be of some antiquity in English, to allow of the shortened vowel (goss-) which appears in the earliest forms; with the ending ‑ander compare bergander n. and Old Norse ǫnd (plural ander).
> The bird Mergus merganser, allied to the ducks but having a sharply serrated bill.
> 1622 The Gossander with them, my goodly Fennes doe show His head as Ebon blacke, the rest as white as Snow. —M. Drayton, 2nd Part Poly-olbion xxv. 106
Wait, I thought they always used divers for loons:
> 1863 Smews and goosanders, divers and loons. C. Kingsley, Water-babies vii. 269
> 1658– Chiefly North American. Any of various large migratory diving birds of the genus Gavia (family Gaviidae), having straight sharply pointed bills, patterned black, white, and grey plumage, and a distinctive wavering call; esp. the great northern diver or common loon, G. immer. Also with distinguishing word. Cf. loony bird n. A.1.

Arctic loon, Pacific loon, red-throated loon, etc.: see the first element.

Usually called diver in Britain and Ireland.
> Either (i) a variant or alteration of another lexical item. Or (ii) a borrowing from a Scandinavian language.
Etymon: loom n.2
Either (i) a variant of loom n.2 (although this is first attested later),

or (ii) reflecting a separate borrowing < a Scandinavian language (compare the forms cited at loom n.2).
> Summary
Of multiple origins. Partly a borrowing from early Scandinavian. Partly a borrowing from Swedish. Partly a borrowing from Danish.
Etymons: Swedish lom, Danish lom.
In Shetland representing Old Norse lóm-r; in modern literary use partly from Shetland dialect and partly < modern Swedish lom and Danish lom.

a. 1694– A name given in northern seas to species of the Guillemot and the Diver, esp. Alca bruennichi and Colymbus septentrionalis (Red-throated Diver). Cf. loon n.3
> 1886 On the face of these sea-ledges of Arveprins Island Bruennich's guillemots, or looms, gather in the breeding season..by tens of thousands. —A. W. Greely, 3 Years of Arctic Service vol. I. 49
with an M
The red-throated loon (North America) or red-throated diver (Britain and Ireland) (Gavia stellata) is a migratory aquatic bird found in the northern hemisphere. The most widely distributed member of the loon or diver family, it breeds primarily in Arctic regions, and winters in northern coastal waters. Ranging from 55 to 67 centimetres (22 to 26 in) in length, the red-throated loon is the smallest and lightest of the world's loons. In winter, it is a nondescript bird, greyish above fading to white below. During the breeding season, it acquires the distinctive reddish throat patch which is the basis...

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