I just noticed this pattern because Nicole finished it. It's by Primitive Needle, called "Kindred Spirits." But the pattern (you have to scroll down) says "kindrid spirits." Why name it something different than the verse? Why correct the spelling for the title? Of course, "kindrid" is no mere mistake; it's meant to be "primitive." I have a lot of bones to pick with these designers of primitive pieces! From the research I've been able to do (and frankly, without the OED, I'm not happy with the research) the primitive version would be "kinrede." Can I just ask if you're going to be primitive be accurate?
Stitchers who stitch embroider reproduction samplers reproduce spelling mistakes, and I'm okay with that. But inventing "mistakes" and reinventing the past, just don't fly.
I started writing this post days ago, and then I came across the new pattern by Only One Ewe Needleworks "Speak not lest you improve the silence" on Carolyn's blog. I've always heard that "Do not speak unless you can improve the silence." Lest you improve the silence means something along the lines of "oh no! what if you improve the silence?" where the original means you should only talk if you've got something good to say. (And not in the juicy sense of good.) The resulting piece actually means the opposite of the proverb I know and flout. (I could scan my earliest report cards as proof, "She is such a good student, but what a chatterbox.")
"Lest" doesn't mean the same thing as "unless" according to the dictionaries I've consulted (and again, I'd have to actually get in the car to check the OED). The two words co-exist as far back as Middle English. Even then, since this is a Quaker piece, and Ackworth was founded in 1779, we shouldn't need to go back that far. Seventeen seventy nine was a long time ago, but surprisingly people were speaking modern English even then. Given how we speak English now, I think the saying--even if there is some etymological reason to use "lest"--is completely confusing.
Of course, all this means is that I won't be stitching either of these designs. You are completely free to make whatever choices you want about butchering my favorite language in the world.
I mean how many times have I told people that game boards are 8 squares by 8 squares and "light on right" and it's been that way since 1475 when the rules for the modern game of chess were written? (There are renderings showing "light on right" as early as 1283.) But that doesn't stop crazy designers from making "primitive" boards that are 7 squares by 7 squares! Oh no. But you can't make me stitch them.
Thanks all for the gerbil love. Ew...that's a little Richard Gere somehow, isn't it? The gerbil has been replaced and all is, well, let's not hope all, is forgotten. There are valuable lessons for us all to take away.