A growing assortment of words and definitions used in the Early Modern era. See the Guide for more information.
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Spotted, stained; polluted. Often used in opposition to immaculate, as in Shakespeare's LOVE'S LABOUR'S LOST (1594), where Armado protests: My love is most immaculate white and red, and his page, Moth, retorts: Most maculate thoughts, master, are masked under such colors. Latin macula, spot, is used as a scientific term in English; also macule. macular, relating to maculae, spots. From the 15th century there were verb forms, macule, maculate, to spot, to pollute. Henry Bradshaw in THE LIFE OF SAINT WERBURGE OF CHESTER (1513) wrote that a sensuall prynce . . . purposed to maculate this vyrgyn gloryous. In the 17th and 18th centuries, maculature was in the dictionaries, as blotting paper, or a waste sheet of printed paper. T. Adams wrote, in THE DEVIL'S BANQUET (1614) , of the lutulent, spumy, maculatorie waters of sinne: maculatory, apt to defile; lutulent (Latin lutum, mud), muddy; see luteous. Thus maculation, defilement; Shakespeare in TROILUS AND CRESSIDA (1606): I will throw my glove to death himselfe, That there's no maculation in thy heart.
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