Re: Our language

Subject: Re: Our language
From: Peter Brown <pbrown -at- MKS -dot- COM>
Date: Tue, 13 May 1997 09:25:34 -0400

John Glenn wrote:
> In a recent post, it was written that something was
> ''invaluable.''
> While the poster's English is correct (no flame, this), the
> ENGLISH rings false - INvaluable? Why not ''valuable?''
... rest deleted
> John Glenn <sfarmh1 -at- scfn -dot- thpl -dot- lib -dot- fl -dot- us>

Parse "valuable" for its original or literal sense and you get "able to
be valued". Thus, "invaluable" describes something to which you cannot
assign a value, worth so much that its worth is incalculable.

The synonym "priceless" explains it well. Worth so much, you cannot put
a price upon it.

"Opinions? I've had a few. But then again, too few to mention."
Peter Brown, Technical Writer (pbrown -at- mks -dot- com)
Mortice Kern Systems Inc. (

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