A "Murder" of Vampires?

Discussion in 'Linguistics' started by Tiassa, Aug 30, 2013.

  1. quinnsong Valued Senior Member

    All I am gonna say is Dark Shadows! Loved it.
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  3. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    So people go hunting a clowder of cats, a labor of moles, or an exaltation of larks, for sport and fun?

    They only exist in fiction, so shits and giggles would be the only reason to hunt them.

    "Once Bitten" with Jim Carrey and Lauren Hutton: now that was a hoot! "Love at First Bite" with George Hamilton: Another!

    As for TV: "Angel," with David Boreanaz and Charisma Carpenter, ran from 1999 to 2004. That was one of the three best fantasy shows ever. (The other two were "Highlander" and "Witchblade," which unfortunately self-destructed when Yancy Butler couldn't stay sober.)

    The dictionary only lists one definition: furrowed, striped, streaked, i.e., marked with striae. What other definition is there that would be approved in edited writing? Even Wikipedia doesn't list an alternative and it has no standards at all. (It can't: I've written Wikipedia articles.)
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  5. parmalee peripatetic artisan Valued Senior Member

    I've wondered about that too. Perhaps such terms came about much later.

    My understanding is that this trend of giving ridiculous names to clusters of animals stems from old English hunting traditions--and the ridiculous bit is partly intentional! See Terms of Venery. The sort of thing Christopher Lee and Ingrid Pitt might have sung a jaunty tune about, were The Wicker Man to have taken a different direction.

    C'mon! Being fictional has never stopped people from taking things too seriously.

    Still, I maintain that vampires ceased to be attractive by the early 1980's--it's partly the hairstyles, but also the fact that Hammer ceased production for a couple of decades.

    That's the one, albeit used in very different contexts. The term was first employed in philosophy, probably by Brian Massumi (translating Deleuze), but quickly spread to psychology, political science, architecture and, of course, literary studies. I maintain that the literary studies folk--some of them, not all-- misuse the term. Speculation: they do so deliberately--I will not elaborate upon this.

    Here's a brief, slightly incoherent primer:

    (from here)

    If you should pursue the matter, you'll find many a parallel with the curious literary habits of habits of late medieval landed sorts.
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  7. GeoffP Caput gerat lupinum Valued Senior Member

    That's not true. You could also hunt them to frighten off women, or become incarcerated.
  8. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    "Clotter" is a variant of "clot" meaning "to clump together," which shifted phonetically to "clowder." So a clowder of cats is a clump of cats.

    Of course not. The full-size Kermit the Frog in my back seat once cajoled a policeman into not giving me a ticket. Brought back fond memories of his buddy in the Air Force, a pilot who took Kermit with him on every flight.

    Trends come and go. When I was a kid, everyone but me learned to work a hula hoop. Now they're oddities.

    Philosophy and philosophers give me a headache. I avoid them at all costs.

    That seems like only a slight (and twisted) variation on "shits and giggles."
  9. R1D2 many leagues under the sea. Valued Senior Member

    How about a collective. Or a gathering. Or a gang...
  10. Stryder Keeper of "good" ideas. Valued Senior Member

    While "Coven" is correct, "Blood sucking" get's used in films... well I think at least the Lost Boys.
  11. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    I never read the book, but like most of us I've seen several film adaptations--both faithful and fanciful. It seems like there was only one vampire in Bram Stoker's story, so he never had to think up a word to describe a group of them. Leaving us in the lurch!

    So what do we call a group of bats? That might work.

    Aha! The venerable United States Government tells us that a group of bats is called a COLONY.

    So: A colony of vampires?
  12. parmalee peripatetic artisan Valued Senior Member

    Dracula also featured the the trio of female vampires, traditionally referred to as lamia--though not by Stoker. Lamia are, by definition, female, but usually appear in groups. Actually, I'm not entirely sure about that, but I'm gonna look it up after I complete this post.

    I don't recall any other pluralities of vampires in any of Stoker's stories, although I do believe there were lamia (plural) in Sheridan Le Fanu's "Carmilla." Of course, that may have just been the Hammer film, and not so in the original story.

    Edit: Ok, not originally a vampire proper--Lamia. Nevertheless, Neil Gaiman interpreted them in this fashion. Peter Gabriel, Keats certainly in mind, may or may not have interpreted them as vampires, but that's what I always took from it. ... Still, an encounter with vampires typically doesn't leave one looking like this:

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  13. Stryder Keeper of "good" ideas. Valued Senior Member

    Another one to consider, if you have "Schools of Fish", does that mean you'd have a "School of Merpeople(Mermaids)"?

    Perhaps others would be:
    • a Faculty of Tutors
    • a Flight of Passengers
    • an Invasion of Aliens

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