If u cn rd ths u cn be a Mediæval Twitterer

June 23, 2011

Just now I was reading a Twitter message (I understand that the gods of Twitter don’t like us to call it a tweet) when I felt a special kind of déjà vu. Special, because I knew that I had past experience that was substantially the same but superficially different. Here is the text of the message:

I imagine Wmbln also worked on yr approach and knew what you were doing & why (as oppoded to turning to it in desperation)

In a former life, I spent a rigorous and rewarding summer at U.C.L.A. studying (for reasons of my then musicological research) Latin paleography. The teacher, Leonard Boyle, O.P. — the late Prefect of the Vatican Library — made it a joy; and no one would have been more amused, had he survived till now, to observe the flourishing of Twitter and Twitter-influenced texting.

Someday, scholars will probably provide, for study of past Twitter communication, cheat-sheet tables analogous to this:

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