virus: Maxims

Sun, 09 May 1999 23:54:04 -0700

Supposedly, this compiling of maxims is an ongoing project. The page on the CoV site that describes this listserve also lists the current projects as:

Current Projects
     Virus Maxims: come up with a list of tenets we can all agree on.
     Expand the reading list; write short reviews for books on the list.

     Work on an FAQ.


David, I assume you are responsible for the selection of the terms "maxim" and "tenet" to describe the structure we want to apply to discussions on this list. Could you say something about your preference for these terms?

Personally, I think "maxim" works just fine. Check out what WWWebster has to say on the matter:

                         Maxim \Max"im\, n. [F. maxime, L. maxima (sc.
                         sententia), the greatest sentence, proposition,
                         axiom, i. e., of the greatest weight or
authority, fem.
                         fr. maximus greatest, superl. of magnus great.
                         Magnitude, and cf. Maximum.] 1. An established
                         principle or proposition; a condensed
proposition of
                         important practical truth; an axiom of
practical wisdom;
                         an adage; a proverb; an aphorism.

                         'T is their maxim, Love is love's reward.
                         2. (Mus.) The longest note formerly used, equal
to two
                         longs, or four breves; a large.

                         Syn: Axiom; aphorism; apothegm; adage; proverb;

                         saying. See Axiom.

Certainly the "established principle or proposition" sense of the word is applicable here. What's the strongest objection to our use of this term?