English 10: Writing Portfolio

 

Catholic Memorial High School

 

2007-2008

   
   
   
   
   
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  One may swear that they know the definition of “swear” which is ordinary, but do they know the other
ten meanings. “Swear” has been cited in writings dating back to 900 A.D. beginning with the Laws of
King Ælfred. The common definition of “swear” in society generally means to promise, used as a verb
most often. The dictionary defines “swear” to take or utter an oath either solemnly or profanely in
verb tense. “Swear” is one of a somewhat small fraction of English words that has been restored
decade after decade with a fresh spelling, altered definition and greater sentence meaning.

From a simple survey of six volunteers, three different spellings were given to match the tense of
“swear”. Eric forming only 17% of the surveyor population naturally noted “sweared” in a sentence
which is a misspelling of the past tense verb, signifying somewhat of confusion within the
conjugations. Nick and Alex wrote “swore” when asked to use “swear” in a sentence to show the
dominant past tense making 33% of a vote. The present tense, however won 50% of volunteers as used
by Mark, Vincent, and Tom jotting down “swears” off the top of their mind. “Swear” has been spelt
sworn swerian, suerian, sweri, ysworen, suuerian, gesworn, and svar along with about 30 more
spelling, some of which are derived from old English.
A student survey shows that about 60% of students and adults use “swear” as a verb off the top of
their head. Also, 80% of the surveyors defined “swear” as a negative term in casual live, such as
the use of explicit langauage, to curse, or to put in vain. Surveyor 1 to 5 (Matt, Derek, Matt S,
Pat, and Pete) all spelt “swear” as it just appeared, “swear.” This common pattern suggests that
“swear” is seen as a present tense verb to most people. The Oxford English Dictionary, which is
today’s dominant formal and slang unabridged dictionary, defines “swear” as a verb meaning to make a
solemn declamation or statement to promise or undertake an oath. John Dryden, an influential
English poet, literary critic, translator and play writer was also fond with the use of “swear.”
Dryden used swear in his piece called Don Sebastian during 1692 as a verb meaning to have, make,
take (a person) sworn. Dryden was quoted on “Let me swear you all to secrecy.” “Swear” is spelt in
the form a modern English writer would record the verb in a piece of work.

The first recording of “swear” was in the Laws of King Ælfred spelt as “swer” quoted “Ne
swer{asg}en {ash}e næfre under hæ{edh}ne godas.” This means “Do not swear in the name of our God”
which typically would be recorded by a scribe. King Author most likely had this scribe hired to
right up a book of laws for the Anglo-Saxons. King Author was King of the West Saxons holding much
power in control therefore “swear” must have been a word used by nobility and added to a sentence
showing a negative action. When King Alfred’s scribe used “swear” in his guide book, “swear” was
used as a verb meaning to make a solemn declaration with an appeal to God or a superhuman being.

“Swear” was so popular back in the day that the verb managed to make an appearance in Beowulf,
first recorded written poem scripted in English (Old English). “Swear” was most likely written on
the pages on Beowulf in c1050 A.D. “Swear” in Beowulf means to take or utter (an oath), either
solemnly or profanely. “Swear” is quoted “He me a{th} as swore.” This means he was with me as he
swore, using the past tense of swear. Today, “swear” is a mandatory word for United States’
presidents to abide by before taking office. Current president George W. Bush was quoted “I, George
W. Bush, Do Solemnly Swear…” This is found in all Presidential Inaugurations, considered to be the
beginning lines of the Presidential Oath.

One of the greatest play wrights of all time felt overly comfortable using the word “swear” in his
dialogues. William Shakespeare is known for using many forms of definitions for “swear,” starting
his own language and writing style to produce a new, formal manner of speech. Shakespeare first
added “swear” into dialogue during 1591 in Henry VI, V 169. William was quoted on “sweare
Allegeance to his Maiesty”, spelt “sweare” meaning to promise or take an oath. William Shakespeare
also used the verb swear in The Tempest, As You Like It, Henry VI, Macbeth, Julius Casear, Merchant
of Venice, Sonnets CXLVII, Romeo and Juliet, and King Lear. Marliese Morse of Switzerland who
speaks Swiss as her first language was quote “I swear it has been getting colder, faster than last
fall.” Marliese’s foreign tongue here shows a tendency to define “swear” as to inform with a
promise of truth.

From the Laws of King Ælfred, “swear” has taken on over twenty meanings just in the verb form.
Each verb may seem the same in meaning, but each definition has an aspect of oath, promise, neglect,
or other characteristics differing from another. “Swear” is just your everyday word, with my
history then the United States, dating much further back than the Confederates. “Swear” with all of
its ancient and common day uses will not fade to a dormant word. As life styles modulate with
today’s fast growing cultures, “swear” will take on fresh meanings to fit the modern mouth as it is
a crucial, popular everyday verb of promise. If one thinks the U.S. has changed a lot since the
time of the Confederates and Civil War, “swear” is 1200 years too old for you.
   
   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In contradiction to your royal and diplomatic life Mr. Geoffrey Chaucer, your work is not fit for
Prentice Hall’s Literature Timeless Voices, Timeless Themes The British Tradition grade 10
text book. After reading The Canterbury Tales countless times from the Prentice Hall text
book I could not escape my withdrawals. The vocabulary in your selection, The Canterbury
Tales
, is extravagant such as “solicitous… garnished… sanguine” has challenge the sophomores
minds adding some new pieces of the English language to their speech. Although, I believe some of
the value of The Canterbury Tales has twice as many aristocracy characters as lower class
characters. The Monk is portrayed as a knight in the story as he walks around with a sword on his
side and wear warlike clothing along with his robe. The Miller is supposed to represent a lower
class citizen as his apparel expresses, but his size and power in taverns doesn’t fit his spot in
society correctly.

The aristocracy and lower class scale is totally balanced in the aristocracy direction. In your
times and the Canterbury times, there were much more lower class to middle class citizens than
aristocracy. The nobles here show number, power, and wealth dominance over the rest. The community
should be tipped in the lower classes direction. Characters such as the Shipman are left alone to
show that they weren’t involved or important with the theme of the tale. Only one man exists in the
poor class which shows a rich a spoiled nation. To understand the time period, the people in your
tale must be supplementary to the era of the community.

The Monk is described as a religion man in the Canterbury community. However, your choice of
apparel on the Monk shows he fights with a sword and is a strong power not just in the church area.
The Monk should not be tried as a knight or fighter, but as a friendly man with advice to give. His
apparel must correspond with his attitude in The Canterbury Tales. The Monk appeals the
story to be religious which is not what the editors with me here at Prentice Hall need. Katharine
M. Wilson agrees with us saying how you gaze on everyone on the pilgrimage except himself,
finishing up in a rush with "There was also a Reeve, and a Miller, A Sumner, and a Pardoner
also, A Man of Law, and myself -- there were names" (542-4). His nobility and Monk being have a
fine line to draw to separate the two character created by his dress. The Knights tale doesn’t
include the Monk as a role player therefore he shouldn’t be a soldier symbol.

The Miller is a lower class man who spends most of his time wasting money in taverns and drinking
with other members of the lower class. He is imaged as a strong character who embodies the power to
be rich and noble. Each description of a character must fit his class. A plus six foot man of two
hundred forty pounds cannot be a weak man with no place in society. He either must outline a
hopeless man with little size and strength or keep the size and have a position in a powerful class.
This keep the theme of an aristocratic ruled group of people. You pretty much adapted The
Canterbury Tales
into a story which presumes gender narratives and culture. Glenn Burger
follows up our statement by saying “However, if this essential connection between gender and
narrative frame constitutes the coercive antistatic ideal of medieval dominant culture, the
performativity inherent in its actual cultural instantiation guarantees that both masculine will and
narrative authority remain far more anxious and unstable sites of meaning than their
"nature" would appear to allow.”

Once again I’d like to apologize for omitting your story, The Canterbury Tales from our
Prentice Hall Timeless Voices, Timeless Themes text book Mr. Chaucer. The other editors here
at Prentice Hall and myself have all agreed to keep “The Nun’s Priest’s Tale“ and “The Wife of
Bath’s Tale“ to our Timeless Voices, Timeless Themes text book studies. We believe singling out
characters from The Canterbury Tales: The Prologue will help the sophomores pick up on your
lessons and understand the concept of iambic pentameter, couplets, and accenting even syllables to
help produce a consistent 10 syllable line pattern.

   
   
   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The amazing game of darts is simple if you have a dart board, however you’ll need darts to
play darts. Darts comes from an Old English word commonly spoken as “daroth.” The word was first
written down as the game of darts in 1598 saying “daroth gomen” meaning dart game. Coming from
Middle English, Old French, of Germanic origin, The word darts carries a strong meaning in the
British tongue today. The OED defines darts as a match of To thrust or throw by hand suddenly and
rapidly a slender, pointed missile, often having tail fins. Darts may be found in “other sports” in
the Telegraph Newspaper, however each day a new article is written for a tournament. Darts holds the
key towards the national past time sport, similar to that of baseball which has been a famous
activity in America all according to Mick O'Regan of “The Sports Factor“. Mark Anthony of the
“The English Blog Newspaper” states darts for its part has been known to be only a recreational
activity that goes along with beer” meaning darts is played commonly in bars and restaurants. Darts
has come a long way since its original name, “Dartelle” to a national hobby in Great Britain, where
stakes fly high among amateurs fighting for pro seeds in hundreds of thousands of dollar
tournaments.

There seems to have been a weapon called a dart in existence for many hundreds of years as
various mostly obscure literary references to the term affirm. However, Tom Thatcher of the Darts
Planet Magazine explains how existence of a dart is not the same as the existence of the game of
darts and the only clear references to any game like darts first appear as a nineteenth century
game. The first such game was called Puff and Dart says Tom Thatcher in his article which used a
blowpipe to fire a dart at the target. It is said that in 1844 during a game of Puff and Dart at a
London pub a player made the unfortunate mistake of sucking rather than blowing. The dart
disappeared into his digestive system and the man was announced dead a few days later. One man’s
mistake did not end the game, rather alter the way the darts are launched. The game was designed to
attempt to land the projected dart onto a bristle board with specific sections of specific points.
The very center, commonly known at the bulls eye is the highest rated point worthy section.

Phil Taylor of the PDC is at he top of his game in England and explains his success.
During an interview with “Sky Sports Newspaper” Phil tells the world how he has become a great
professional dart player. He says “I’ve been playing darts since I was 13 years old with my friends.
I never thought I would get serious about the game from matches in my basement. It was a hobby at
first, but the excitement of pinning a bulls-eye is breathtaking.” The game has grabbed many young
stars like Phil Taylor and shown their ability through England in tournaments like Bournemouth,
Glasgow, and Nottingham write Cyber Darts.

Popular titles involve the BDO or British Darts Organization. The BDO puts together
tournaments for the Professional Darts Corporation or PDC. Popular professional in current
headlines, Mark Webster is raking in cash for his Dart skills. Dart players like Mark Webster hold
everyday jobs, as Mark is a plumber. Mr. Webster must decide whether to complete his apprenticeship
as a plumber or go full time. The rival PDC organization will be luring Mark to compete full time
with stakes high at a tournament schedule over the next 12 months offering a combined £4 million in
prize money.

Darts is believed to have started off as a military hobby states “The Sports Factor
Newspaper” and has led to an English pass time love. The stakes are high at British tournaments
considering the PDC is ponying up approximately $250,000 in prize money for the U.S. Open of the
Greater Trenton English Dart League says the New Jersey Darts Blog. Professional Darts Corporation
Chairman Barry Hearn amps up the tensions announcing “the top 50 players in the world will be
competing for large sums of cash prizes.” The classic game of darts has held its position in nation
sports says Barry. The sport only has room to grow in competition preaches PDC Chairman Barry Hearn.

   
   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

British literature has been the origin of many themes to drama, prose, poetry, and story writing.
Many British writers have their name recorded in history for magnificent works. Geoffrey Chaucer is
one of the early British writers who lived from about 1343-1400 is known for his King Author works.
On the total opposite side of the scale, author J.K. Rowling has established her name in the modern
world for her Harry Potter books. Like Sir Thomas Malory writing many volumes to the King Author
stories, J.K. Rowling writes with the same mentality to write a 7 book series. Authors like Jane
Austen, Virginia Woolf, George Orwell, A.E. Housman, and Doris Lessing all have a distinctive
characteristic in their pieces which are truly profile specific. The setting, theme, resolution,
gender, and form create a statement revealing what an author tries to reveal and create by choosing
a direct device which is a writer’s personality at stake.

The tempest and conflicted settings in British literature has maintained an important
characteristic. George Orwell, John Dryden, and J.K. Rowling expressed their thoughts about setting
in their works. J.K. Rowling, feeling confident from her Harry Potter books stating “Hogwarts, ah, a
magic beyond all we do here” [London Times] trying to explain how her location of Hogwarts in her
stories creates a dreamy world which is a fantasy to think about. John Dryden then explained “all
habits gather unseen degrees, as brooks make rivers, rivers run to seas,” [Prologue to Rival Queens
Page 4] meaning the setting carries the theme itself. Thomas Carlyle, a popular British critic
agreed with both J.K. Rowling and John Dryden with the fantasy land carries the theme even further.
Although Thomas Carlyle said “he who throws dirt always loses ground” [London Times] which was
directed to John Dryden to not go against J.K.‘s ideas, but pick up some techniques. George Orwell
writes “Probably the battle of Waterloo was won on the playing-fields of Eton, but the opening
battles of all subsequent wars have been lost there” [The Enchanted Island 23].

Virginia Woolf, Doris Lessing, and Sir Thomas Malory dispute the importance of a masculine gendered
character guiding the central message in literature. Virginia Woolf said “Literature is strewn with
the wreckage of men who have minded beyond reason the opinions others” [The Hours Prologue Page 12].
Virginia was nervous about using such a strong quote stating that men make literature but when Doris
said “Man, who is he? Too bad, to be the work of God: Too good for the work of chance” [The Lost
Macy Lectures 7], Virginia stood by her decision to go against her own gender and choose men for
literature. Sir Thomas Malory writes “Who so pulleth out this sword of this stone and anvil is right
wise king born of all England” [King Author 12]. Gordon Byron of stated “a man must serve his time
to every trade Save censure” [Childe Harold] and was pleased with the common decision of men
sculpting literature.

A.E. Housman differs from Geoffrey Chaucer that the form in poetry relies on the lines lengths to
create rhythm. A.E. Housman said “If a line of poetry strays out of length, my skin bristles”
[Poets’ Corner Shropshire Lad 23]. Housman was referring to the importance of fitting lines of
poetry together with equal lengths to create an even shave or format. Geoffrey Chaucer, unfamiliar
with this poetry form states “There’s never a new fashion but it’s old” [General Prologue to The
Canterbury Tales]. A.E. liked his braveness to not praise this poetry style but withhold its
quality. A nearby critic, Channing Pollock said “Each generation produces its squad of moderns with
peashooters to attack Gibraltar“ [Metropolis 1927 Review 4].

Charles Dickens and Charlotte Bronte dispute the idea that a tragic theme carries a climax to a
higher and more intense story line. The realism Charles Dickens brings from the Victorian Period
creates awe. Dickens writes to “Have a heart that never hardens, and a temper that never tires, and
a touch that never hurts” [Response David Copperfield 3]. Charlotte Bronte said “I am above the
weakness of seeking to establish a sequence of cause and effect, between the disaster and the
atrocity” [Jane Eyre Collection Prologue 13]. Edward Dowden, a local critic who said “your tragedies
are tragedies without villains” [The Singer Review]. Charles Dickens said “Accidents will occur in
the best regulated families" [Christmas Numbers of Household Works]. Charlotte Bronte writes “I
feel monotony and death to be almost the same” [Jane Eyre’s Epilogue].

William Shakespeare with his tragic endings, Jane Austen with her ironic resolutions, and C.S.
Lewis with his protagonist conclusions put up strong reasons to believe a resolution is the most
important aspect to literature. Shakespeare said how the endings of literature are because “Ambition
should be made of sterner stuff” [Macbeth Review 31]. C.S. Lewis put forth his belief in a
resolution saying “An explanation of cause is not a justification by reason” [Surprised by Joy
Memoir]. Jane Austen writes “An artist cannot do anything slovenly” [The Bennets 12]. Terry
Eagleton, a rude critic in the guest room said resolutions need an enemy and “if you don't have
enemies, you don't have character” [Literary Theory: An Introduction]. Terry Eagleton writes
the literature of Britain has “formed much of what we called today, the modernized writing style”
[The Illusions of Postmodernism].


Works Cited

• Austen, Jane “An artist cannot do anything slovenly.” The Bennets 12. 22.
• Bronte, Charlotte “I am above the weakness of seeking to establish a sequence of cause and effect,
between the disaster and the atrocity.” Jane Eyre Collection Prologue. 13.
• --- “I feel monotony and death to be almost the same.” Jane Eyre’s Epilogue. 12.
• Byron, Gordon “A man must serve his time to every trade Save censure.” Childe Harold. 2004. 3.
• Carlyle, Thomas “He who throws dirt always loses ground.“ London Times. 2003.
• Chaucer, Geoffrey “There’s never a new fashion but it’s old.” General Prologue to The Canterbury
Tales. 7.
• Dickens, Charles “Have a heart that never hardens, and a temper that never tires, and a touch that
never hurts” Response David Copperfield. 3.
• ---"Accidents will occur in the best regulated families." Christmas Numbers of Household
Works. 23.
• Dowden, Edward “Your tragedies are tragedies without villains” The Singer Review. 8. 2002.
• Dryden, John. “All habits gather unseen degrees, as brooks make rivers, rivers run to seas.” Rival
Queens Prologue. 4.
• Eagleton, Terry “If you don't have enemies, you don't have character.” Literary Theory:
An Introduction. 7. 2005.
• --- “Formed much of what we called today, the modernized writing style.” The Illusions of
Postmodernism. 4. 1997.
• Housman, A.E. “If a line of poetry strays out of length, my skin bristles.” Peots’ Corner A
Shropshire Lad. 23.
• Lessing, Doris “Man, who is he?“ The Lost Macy Lectures. 7.
• Lewis, C.S. “An explanation of cause is not a justification by reason.” Surprised by Joy Memoir.
1958.
• Malory, Sir Thomas “Who so pulleth out this sword of this stone and anvil is right wise king born
of all England.” King Author. 12.
• Orwell, George “Probably the battle of Waterloo was won on the playing-fields of Eton, but the
opening battles of all subsequent wars have been lost there.” The Enchanted Island. 23.
• Pollock, Channing “Each generation produces its squad of moderns with peashooters to attack
Gibraltar. “ Metropolis 1927 Review. 4. 2004.
• Rowling, J.K. “Hogwarts, ah, a magic beyond all we do here.“ London Times. 2002
• Shakespeare, William “Ambition should be made of sterner stuff.” Macbeth Review. 31.
• Woolf, Virginia “Literature is strewn with the wreckage of men who have minded beyond reason the
opinions others.“ The Hours Prologue. 12.