23 January, 2010

I love the word "sanguine," and for my money it should be defined as describing just this sort of look.

But it doesn't.

Strangely, many people seem to agree with me, and you often hear it used in the way of "confident," or more specifically, as an undeterred or otherwise unflustered confidence. But really it describes a more animated, cheery, outwardly optimistic kind of confidence--happy confidence. Which is lame.

To me that is "chipper," not "sanguine."
(spotted in airport, like previous post of DS-playin' kids)


J T Storey said...

Sanguine is one of my favorite words; the etymology is fascinating. It was one of the four 'temperaments' associated with the four humors: blood (sanguine), black bile (melancholy), yellow bile (cholera), and phlegm. The red-complected sort was considered 'sanguine': cheerful, optimistic, etc. However, because of the association with blood, the word 'sanguinary' means quite the opposite: 'bloodthirsty'! Thus one could say, "Despite his sanguine disposition, his opponents referred to him as 'Nicholas the Sanguinary'"...

Davis Chino said...

Jeff, that is bloody good.
Good to know the word carries a built-in contradiction--no wonder I'm uneasy!