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Friday, December 30, 2011

Word of the Day

Our word for today is tyle. It comes from P. 263 of Heinlein's Stranger In A Strange Land, where I found the phrase 
". . . admit them and tyle the door."
What does it mean? That's a good question, Bucky. Look it up on Wikipedia and you get a page about Google, with no mention of tyle. Look it up on Google and you get acronyms, clobbered versions of style, computer programming goble-de-gook, and the occasional person using it as a name. Merriam-Webster asks you to sign up for a free 14 day trial. Wiktionary finally gives me a clue: tyles is a Lithuanian word. It is the third-person singular future tense of tylėti. Tyleti is a verb meaning to silence or to be quiet.

So I'm thinking that maybe this phrase "tyle the door" means to mark it inconspicuously, like depression era hobos.

2 comments:

Ole Phat Stu said...

Wrong. Tyler (or Tiler) is the name of the office of outer guard of a Masonic Lodge. Early speculative Masonic lodges met in rooms in taverns and other public meeting places, and all Lodges appoint a Tyler to guard the door from unqualified, malicious or simply curious people.

Tyle the door means to put a guard person on the door (aka bouncer).

Charles Pergiel said...

Thank you.