Words

gorgeous, adj.
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The Independent Culture
IT IS usual to call something gorgeous but rare to call it gorgeous - that is, it has become a casual exclamation of delight without any attention to the shade of meaning which it once had, when it betokened a question of raiment. From the old French gorgias, for finely dressed, its further origins are uncertain, but have nothing to do with gorging.

In English use, of rooms and dress, from the late 15th century, it duly acquired the metaphorical sense of "glittering in various colours" - as Johnson defined it - and, as such, usually referred to prose or speech. Doubtless to the usual French chagrin, this sense was supplanted in the late 19th century by the common-or-garden American term - indeed, first of all, of a visit to the Manon Route.

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