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  • "Minutes, indecisive minutes passed: the cleaning of the deck resumed: a work of superogation, if ever there was one... for the squall astern was coming up fast in their wake..."

    --O'Brian, The Wine-Dark Sea, 114

    March 14, 2008

  • An elided form of supererogation. Strangely, O'Brian uses the full spelling later in the same book:

    To the landsman, to the mere superficial observer, this might have seemed a work of supererogation, since clear on her larboard bow rose the headland of Punta Angeles...

    --Patrick O'Brian, 1993, The Wine-Dark Sea, p. 219

    March 14, 2008

  • A typo, maybe?

    March 14, 2008

  • Could be, but it is listed as an old variant spelling in the OED and gets a decent number of hits in Google Books.

    March 14, 2008

  • Ah. I've seen it before myself, but I just wondered.... Signed, Far Too Much of a Scobberlotcher to Check

    March 14, 2008