fainting in coils

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Fenek
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fainting in coils

Postby Fenek » 2006-07-25, 21:57

Could you please explain to me what "fainting in coils" means or what it possibly could mean?
I'd appreciate any corrections to my messages!
Vi sarò molto grato per ogni correzione!
Zelo vam bom hvaležen za popravke!
Aş fi recunoscător pentru orice corectare!
Bio bih vam veoma zahvalan na ispravkama!

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Sisyphe
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Postby Sisyphe » 2006-07-25, 22:03

I've lived in an anglophone country (Canada) for all of my life and I've never heard this before...I instant messaged a few friends and they had never heard this either...
Last edited by Sisyphe on 2006-09-21, 22:03, edited 1 time in total.
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ctoncc
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Postby ctoncc » 2006-07-25, 22:22

It comes from Alice in Wonderland.

This is what Wikipedia has to say about it:

"The Mock Turtle speaks of a Drawling-master, "an old conger eel," that used to come once a week to teach "Drawling, Stretching, and Fainting in Coils." This is a reference to the art critic John Ruskin, who came once a week to the Liddell house to teach the children drawing, sketching, and painting in oils."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alice%27s_Adventures_in_Wonderland

So I don't think it really means anything.

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Fenek
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Postby Fenek » 2006-07-25, 22:29

Yes, it's from "Alice in Wonderland".

But when you hear this phrase, does it appear to you, native speakers of English, that the phrase is complete nonsense or does it have any meaning, even if a rather strange one?
I'd appreciate any corrections to my messages!
Vi sarò molto grato per ogni correzione!
Zelo vam bom hvaležen za popravke!
Aş fi recunoscător pentru orice corectare!
Bio bih vam veoma zahvalan na ispravkama!

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Postby Ulven » 2006-07-26, 2:46

To answer your question, Fenek, nonsense is most prominent to my ears. But if I try to find meaning, I'd guess it could mean someone who "faints in coils" is someone who is so timid that they curl (or, coil) up like a snake and hide in a corner or faint at first sign of danger. But this is my imagination talking. It sounds gibberish to this native :wink:
If a tree falls in the woods
And no-one's there to hear
...the man under it scream
Is he really hurt?
And did he deserve it?

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Fenek
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Postby Fenek » 2006-07-26, 8:03

Thank you very much! :D

Any other explanations? What comes to your mind when you hear "fainting in coils"?
I'd appreciate any corrections to my messages!
Vi sarò molto grato per ogni correzione!
Zelo vam bom hvaležen za popravke!
Aş fi recunoscător pentru orice corectare!
Bio bih vam veoma zahvalan na ispravkama!

Shakespuss
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Re: fainting in coils

Postby Shakespuss » 2020-11-12, 10:17

Fainting in Coils is a typical Lewis Caroll witicism.

Basically it means 'Painting in Oils', but pays reference to the strong aroma of oil paints using particularly heady ingredients mixed with the oil medium, in particular those such as Cadmium etc.
As such it might be conjectured that the fumes could lead to passing out if inhaled too much.

A lovely classic, romantic notion from the era.


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