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Talk:Rufus C. Somerby

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 Definition (c. 1833 - 1903), showman, and panoramist. [d] [e]
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Hi, Russell: Is "c. 1833-after" a standard form of, I imagine, saying "circa 1833 or later"? I've never seen it before, and I had to stop and study it for a while to figure out what I *think* it means. For all I know it's common academic (or mainstream, for that matter) usage. But I wonder if there's a more graceful way of stating this? Best, Hayford Peirce 11:51, 10 June 2007 (CDT)

Hayford -- just a matter of spacing -- I've just corrected it to (c. 1833 - after 1903); the birthdate is best guess (ergo c. for circa); the "after 1903" means that he was still living in 1903, ergo his death date must be after that. Russell Potter 11:54, 10 June 2007 (CDT)
Okie, but it still doesn't seem very intuitive to me, although I gotta say I can't think of a better way of saying it in a precise manner. It's wordy, but how about (born c. 1833, died sometime after 1903) or (born c. 1833, date of death uncertain, but 1903 or later) At least that way no one can possibly misinterpret what is being said -- and I think full information is more important here than saving a minute amount of space. Hayford Peirce 12:28, 10 June 2007 (CDT)
Hayford, thanks, but I think it's OK for now -- this is, in fact, a style I have seen in quite a few published books, and which I used myself in my new book on this subject, at the suggestion of the copyeditor. I don't think "after 1903" is all that ambiguous; the alternatives may be more absolutely immune to misunerstanding but are as you say much wordier. Russell Potter 12:46, 10 June 2007 (CDT)
The em dash has indeed made it clearer -- thanks! Russell Potter 13:26, 10 June 2007 (CDT)
I wish you would bug Larry about reinstoring the Specil Symbols at the bottom of the edit page, it would sure make life easier! I have asked him, and so has Stephen Ewen, I think, but he hasn't responded. Maybe if more authors complained.... Hayford Peirce 13:28, 10 June 2007 (CDT)