- From Middle French esperance (cf. modern French espérance). (Wiktionary)
- Middle English esperaunce, from Old French, from Vulgar Latin *spērantia, from Latin spērāns, spērant-, present participle of spērāre, to hope; see spē- in Indo-European roots. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“O son of Adam! what hath befooled thee in this long esperance?”
“Would Heaven I wot if Destiny mine esperance will degree!”
“Fallait absolument que je fasse mon compte rendu de la journee parce que vraiment je ne peux pas dire que j'etais decu par le forum puisque je ne m'attendais pas a un truc exceptionnel mais c que la ct au dela de mes esperance mais dans l'sens inverse de la chose ...”
“Robert Bruce had great veneration for Fillan, and on the eve of the battle of Bannockburn in 1314, having procured a relic of the saint to have with his army, he ".... past the remanent of the nicht in his prayaris with gud esperance of victorie.”
“To be worst,/The lowest and most dejected thing of fortune,/Stands still in esperance, lives not in fear.”
“Eyght, King of England, did abolishe frome his realme the name and authoritie of the Pape of Rome; suppress the Abbayis, and uther places of Idolatrie; which geve esperance to diverse realmes, that some godlye reformatioun should thairof have ensewed.”
“He, a man most gentill of nature, and most addict to please hir in all thingis not repugnant to God, wret to those that then war assembled at Sanct Johnestoun, to stay, and nott to come fordwarte; schawand what promess and esperance he had of the Quenis Grace favouris.”
“The Appointment maid, all the godly war glaid; for some esperance  thei had, that thairby Goddis woord should somewhat bud, as in deid so it did.”
“The brut of the learnyng of these two, and thare honest lyiff, and of thare fervencye and uprychtnes in religioun, was such, that great esperance thare was, that thare presence should haif bene confortable to the Kirk of God.”
“And thus, after that sche be craft had obteaned hir purpoise, we departed in good esperance of hir favouris, praysing God in our hartes that sche was so weall enclyned towardes godlynes.”
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Ay, ay, the best terms will grow obsolete: damns have had their day. -- Richard Brinsley Sheridan (1751-1816)
Obsolete, rare, and obscure words culled from my Wordie/Wordnik Curio Cabi...
It's exactly what it sounds like. And yeah, for real people as much as characters. Big surprise.
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Boston: Re-Printed and Sold at J. Draper's Printing-Office in Newbury-Street. (Price Sixteen Pence single.)
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