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Venus’ Secret

17 May

cestus – n. the decorated girdle of Venus that caused amourousness

Classical Usage:  The Quaker family with whom Eliza and George take refuge has the maternal leadership of one Rachel Halliday, a quiet force for good.  This is how Stowe describes her, or describes someone else to describe her. “Bards have written of the cestus of Venus, that turned the heads of all the world in successive generations.  We had rather, for our part, have the cestus of Rachel Halliday, that kept heads from being turned, and made everything go on harmoniously.  We think it is more suited to our modern days, decidedly.

Classically Mad Usage:  I agree with Mrs. Stowe, I think Rachel’s cestus is more suitable, but sadly, it seems Venus’ is the girdle for sale in most stores.

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Posted by on May 17, 2012 in Uncle Tom's Cabin

 

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