July marked the first month of my HUMANS OF THE PFISTER (HOTP) series. The theme: Life, Liberty, & Happiness.
This second month of HOTP will focus on augustly stories of guests and visitors to The Pfister Hotel–of which there are sure to be plenty.
As a preview of what’s to come, look for tales inspired by the etymology of our eighth month:
1660s, from Latin augustus “venerable, majestic, magnificent, noble,” probably originally “consecrated by the augurs, with favorable auguries” (see augur(n.)); or else “that which is increased” (see augment).
- Who is the most venerable, majestic, magnificent, and/or noble person you have known?
- When have you felt the most “consecrated by the augurs”?
- When have you felt the most “increase”?
1540s, from Latin augur, a religious official in ancient Rome who foretold events by interpreting omens, perhaps originally meaning “an increase in crops enacted in ritual,” in which case it probably is from Old Latin *augos (genitive *augeris) “increase,” and is related to augere “increase” (see augment). The more popular theory is that it is from Latin avis “bird,” because the flights, singing, and feeding of birds, along with entrails from bird sacrifices, were important objects of divination (compare auspicious).
- When have you felt like the cards were in your favor, like the stars were aligning, etc.?
- When did you interpret a “sign” of some sort and act upon it, for better or for worse?
c. 1400, from Old French augmenter “increase, enhance” (14c.), from Late Latin augmentare “to increase,” from Latin augmentum “an increase,” from augere “to increase, make big, enlarge, enrich,” from PIE root *aug- (1) “to increase” (source also of Sanskrit ojas “strength;” Lithuanian augu “to grow,” aukstas “high, of superior rank;” Greek auxo “increase,” auxein “to increase;” Gothic aukan “to grow, increase;” Old English eacien “to increase”).
- When have you felt the most “enlarged,” the most “enriched”?
- How did you become the august person that you are?
1590s, “of good omen” (implied in auspiciously), from Latin auspicium “divination by observing the flight of birds,” from auspex (genitive auspicis) + –ous.
- Have you ever had an epiphany? A time when the lightbulb lit up?