chintz + cheetah

Chintz is a printed cotton cloth; the word comes from Hindi, chint, from Sanskrit, chitra-s, ‘bright, clear, many-coloured, distinctively marked’. The word cheetah has the same origin: from Hindi chita, ‘leopard’, which is from Sanskrit chitraka, ‘hunting leopard, tiger’ (chitra-s, ‘bright, distinctively marked’ + kayah, ‘body’). This leopard print chintz was designed by Rose Cumming (1887-1968), a Sydney-born textile designer and interior decorator who made her career in New York. Stranded there (while en route to Paris) in 1917 because of transport issues related toRead more

emptiness – guest post by John Mateer

“In Buddhist and Taoist philosophy emptiness is a key concept, yet in English it becomes either something banal, ’empty of meaning’, or something haunting, frightening, bleak – almost as echoic and disturbing as the notion of death. But its more usual, shallower impression in English reminds me that language itself might give the impression of being shallow and slight even as it conveys concepts that can shape one’s world.” From OED: empty, From Old English, meaning ‘at leisure, not occupied; unmarried’,Read more