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I'll paste you two passages about usage of "mankind" and "man" from my NOAD. It seems you were right, usage has changed for "politically correct" reasons: USAGE of "man" Traditionally, the word man has been used to refer not only to adult males but also to human beings in general, regardless of sex. There is a historical explanation for this: in Old ...


It's not bad. Bad is unethical. We're not talking ethics here. But it is potentially dangerous. To any number of people or projects. Anything you present to a client is, of course, actually coming from your employer, and the clients know this. However, the clients are also aware that whatever you're presenting is also going to be interpreted to their ...


Sure, you can say the world is handsome. It's just that the word "beautiful" has worn a path in our language regarding the world. Handsome can also mean imposing, or of great size, as in "a handsome prize" or "a handsome sum of money"; and you can use any human-descriptive adjective you like, really, if you are speaking figuratively and employing the ...


Because handsome and beautiful are subtly distinct aesthetic qualities. Handsomeness emphasises form and fitness for function, while beauty is more general.


Inanimate objects in our world are often given the feminine gender. For example, ships are called 'she' i.e. She's a wonderful ship. That is why it is only natural to use the adjective 'beautiful' on these inanimate objects, hence the description that the Earth is beautiful.


Sure, you can say that the world is handsome, but it sounds weird. 'handsome' is generally used for a guy's looks. And that's about it (with some stretching of meaning: Can you call a woman 'handsome'? ) 'beautiful' is so general as to be applicable to any positive esthetic experience.

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