‘Tis brief, my lord.

Polonius also uses the word brief in this play.
This makes me think about the way that language travels – through families and other familiars. Is it a familial verbal motif to use brief? Or do many other characters use “briefs” and I’m just not thinking of them at the moment?

I read an article about favorite words and phrases – how they travel like a virus from person to person – how words we use habitually migrate to others who either identify them as ours and pick them up or identify them as ours and avoid them. A vocabulary moves according to one’s company. Ophelia would seem to be primarily in her father’s company and would therefore take on some of his word preferences. Maybe. Or maybe it’s just a coincidence.


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