Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Not prolific

The word prolific is all over the news today, in the phrase “most prolific serial killer in U.S. history” and the like. Merriam-Webster’s definitions:

1 : producing young or fruit especially freely : FRUITFUL

2 archaic : causing abundant growth, generation, or reproduction

3 : marked by abundant inventiveness or productivity // a prolific composer
Prolific comes from the French prolifique, which itself goes back to the Latin prōlēs, offspring. The word’s associations with new life and creativity make it a particularly grotesque choice for characterizing a killer. Worst or deadliest is more appropriate. No one should honor a killer as prolific.

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