Gracefulness – Wikipedia

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Gracefulness - Wikipedia

The swan is commonly referenced in literature for instance of a “sleek” animal.

Like swans, ballerinas are sometimes used as an examples of gracefulness.

The “sleek” Japanese cherry tree.

Gracefulness, or being sleek, is the bodily attribute of displaying “fairly agility”, within the type of elegant motion, poise, or stability. The etymological root of grace is the Latin phrase gratia from gratus, that means pleasing.[1] Gracefulness has been described by reference to its being aesthetically pleasing. For instance, Edmund Burke wrote:

Gracefulness is an concept not very completely different from magnificence; it consists of a lot the identical issues. Gracefulness is an concept belonging to posture and movement. In each these, to be sleek, it’s requisite that there be no look of problem; there’s required a small inflection of the physique; and a composure of the components in such a way, as to not encumber one another, to not seem divided by sharp and sudden angles. On this ease, this roundness, this delicacy of perspective and movement, it’s that each one the magic of grace consists, and what’s known as its je ne sais quoi; as will likely be apparent to any observer, who considers attentively the Venus de Medicis, the Antinous, or any statue usually allowed to be sleek in an excessive diploma.[2]

The issue in defining precisely what constitutes gracefulness is described on this evaluation of Henri Bergson’s use of the time period:

The natural type of drama is most clearly prompt in Bergson’s use of the phrase ‘gracefulness’ [la grâce]. Gracefulness shouldn’t be imposed from with out however generated from inside. Gracefulness is ‘the immateriality which … passes into matter.’ On this formulation, the soul, or what Bergson elsewhere calls the élan important, the life drive, shapes the matter that accommodates it. The soul shouldn’t be immobilized by matter, as it’s in comedy, however stays infinitely supple and perpetually in movement.[3]

Gracefulness is commonly referenced by simile, with folks typically being described as being “as sleek as a swan”,[4][5][6] or “as sleek as a ballerina”.[7][8] The idea of gracefulness is utilized each to motion, and to inanimate objects. For instance, sure bushes are generally known as being “sleek”, such because the Betula albosinensis, Prunus × yedoensis (Yoshino cherry), and Areca catechu (betel-nut palm).[9][10][11]

Gracefulness is usually confused with gracility, or slenderness, though the latter phrase is derived from a unique root, the Latin adjective gracilis (masculine or female), or gracile (neuter)[12] which in both kind means slender, and when transferred for instance to discourse, takes the sense of “with out decoration”, “easy”, or varied related connotations.[13] The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary remarks of gracility, for instance: Lately misused (by way of affiliation with grace) for Gracefully slender. This misuse is unlucky at the least, as a result of the phrases gracile and grace are utterly unrelated: the etymological root of grace is the Latin phrase gratia from gratus, that means pleasing[14] and nothing to do with slenderness or thinness.[14]


  1. ^ Little, William; Fowler H.W.; Coulson J.; Onions, C.T. (Ed.): “Shorter Oxford English Dictionary on Historic Principals”. Pub.: Oxford on the Clarendon Press (1968)
  2. ^ Edmund Burke, A Philosophical Enquiry into the Origin of Our Concepts of the Chic and Lovely (1756), p. 226-227.
  3. ^ Alan Louis Ackerman, Seeing Issues: From Shakespeare to Pixar (2011), p. 55.
  4. ^ Robert Allen Palmatier, Talking of Animals: A Dictionary of Animal Metaphors (1995), p. 174.
  5. ^ John E. Ray, A Journey Overseas: Sketches of Males and Manners, Individuals and Locations, in Europe (1882), p. 107: “There are two thousand of them consistently gliding forwards and backwards by way of the canals, as noiseless as a ghost and as sleek as a swan”.
  6. ^ Edwin Russell Jackman, John Scharff, Steens Mountain in Oregon’s Excessive Desert Nation (1967), p. 70: “‘Swish as a swan’ is nearly a cliche, it has been used so typically”.
  7. ^ Susan Ok. Cahn, Approaching Robust: Gender and Sexuality in Twentieth-century Ladies’s Sport (1995), p. 219, quoting a Life journal photo-essay on gymnasts as saying that “a gymnast will be as sleek as a ballerina and as interesting as a mannequin in a fragrance advert”.
  8. ^ Arnold L. Haskell, The Fantastic World of Dance (1960), p. 76: “Dancing as training, understood by the Greeks, in the present day is coming to the fore once more. With limbs much less supple, however extra highly effective than a lady’s, a male dancer’s virile leaps are each bit as sleek as a ballerina’s”.
  9. ^ John Freeman, Create Your Personal Woodland Backyard (2010), p. 45: “B. albo-sinensis: Chinese language Birch, finally makes a 15 metre (50ft) sleek tree with shiny inexperienced leaves turning golden yellow within the autumn.
  10. ^ Carol W. Corridor, Norman E. Corridor, The Timber Press Information to Gardening within the Pacific Northwest (2009), p. 129: Prunus × yedoensis (Yoshino cherry). Very sleek tree blooms early, with medium-sized, frivolously aromatic flowers of pale pink showing earlier than leaves.
  11. ^ Sophy Moody, The Palm Tree (1864), p. 88-89, on the betel-nut palm: “At three years previous it begins to bear lengthy bunches of orange-coloured fruit, which, contrasting with the deep wealthy hue of the leaves, provides the appeal of color to that of gracefulness of kind”.
  12. ^ Grey, Mason D., Jenkins, Thornton; “Latin for In the present day, Ebook 2”; Pub: Ginn and Co., Ltd. (1934)
  13. ^ Simpson, D. G. (1977). Cassell’s Latin dictionary: Latin-English, English-Latin. London: Cassell. ISBN 0-02-522580-4.
  14. ^ a b Little, William; Fowler H.W.; Coulson J.; Onions, C.T. (Ed.): “Shorter Oxford English Dictionary on Historic Principals”. Pub.: Oxford on the Clarendon Press (1968).

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