Francisco Jover y Casanova - El cardenal Cisneros libertando a los cautivos de Orán
We use the Germanic when we want to be direct, close, honest: such wrords as “love, “warm’” “come, “go, “hate”, “thank”, “fear’”.
Tbe Romance words are used when we want to keep feeling at
a disance, so that we may articulate with precision: “amity”
“exacerbate, “propinquity”, “evacuate”, “obloquy”, “gratitude”, pre-sentiment”. Romance, with its distancing eftect and polysyllabic
intrcaacies, can also conceal, so that the result is not ambivalence but opacity. Extreme cases are to be found in political and military gobbledygook, when Madison Avenue gets into bed with Death :
Thus death itself is a “zero survivability situation, explosion is “energetic disassembly”; and we do not see human flesh in “maximise harrassment and interdiction” or “terminate with extreme prejudice”.
Romance is rodent, nibbled on the lips. Germanic is resonant, from the belly. It is also simple, and, through its simplicity, ambivalent: once more the paradox
William Blake - The Lovers Whirlwind, 1827.
1903 Henri Matisse Le Bouquet sur la table de bambou 54,6x45 cm Genève, Galerie Jan Krugier