Corrections to the blogosphere, the consensus, and the world

Wednesday, June 23, 2004

Da Vinci Coding Error

I know that airport thrillers aren't held to a very high standard, but the Da Vinci Code is surely crappily written even for that. The first sentence - no, the first two words - no, the first word marks it as a clunker.
"Renowned curator...'
'Renowned' is a purely public word, used in obituaries and public speeches but never in interpersonal interaction. Its noun, 'renown'is now confined absolutely to historical romances. The word itself is used when the user wants to say 'famous' but dimly realises that this would be an obviously laughable exaggeration, and so picks a word that has less content but the same aura.
And "Renowned curator" is a particular example of a persistent weirdness about the book; the people involved are academic wet dreams, people who are celebrities for their work in obscure learned journals. Indiana Jones has a lot to answer for.

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