avium concentus in agris (leopold_paula_b) wrote in unusual_words,
avium concentus in agris


rathe: [the lost positive of rather] appearing or ripening early in the year, as flowers or fruit.

In ward wary the watcher hearing come that man mildhearted eft rising with swire ywimpled to him her gate wide undid. Lo, levin leaping lightens in eyeblink Ireland's westward welkin. Full she drad that God the Wreaker all mankind would fordo with water for his evil sins. Christ's rood made she on breastbone and him drew that he would rathe infare under her thatch. That man her will wotting worthful went in Horne's house.

James Joyce, Ulysses
That passage imitates "The Wanderer," an Anglo-Saxon lament preserved in the Exeter Book, copied c. 975.

                           Pull down thy vanity,
Rathe to destroy, niggard in charity,

Ezra Pound, Canto LXXXI
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