-1

In the novel Fortress of Eagles by C.J. Cherryh, the word "yonder" is used like this:

... the most incorruptible, tiresome priest alive, ... him in the rope belt and rough-spun yonder.

Although it is a fantasy novel, all of the materials and species it references are ones found in real life, and it doesn't use made up names to refer to real life things, so my guess is that this is some very archaic usage of the word "yonder". However, none of my googling has found anything about the word ever naming a type of fabric or fiber.

4
  • I'm thinking I've seen a garment with a similar name.
    – Hot Licks
    Jan 28 '16 at 2:45
  • @HotLicks Yonder-wear?
    – deadrat
    Jan 28 '16 at 3:00
  • 1
    The OED print versions are unaware of yonder as a name for a fiber. Are you sure the sentence doesn't mean "him, the one over there wearing a rope belt and homemade clothes"?
    – deadrat
    Jan 28 '16 at 3:01
  • 2
    Context matters. People avoid him: "even His Holiness avoided his company, Efanor'spriest, Jormys, him in the rope belt and rough-spun yonder." He's standing alone over there (yonder) in his humble clothing. Jan 28 '16 at 4:29
3

Yonder is being used here in its normal sense to mean over there.

I think what's confusing you is the term 'rough-spun' - it's being used as a noun, not an adjective, and means 'cloak' or 'priest's habit' in this context.

3
0

There's no definition in the Oxford English Dictionary that indicates such a usage or meaning for yonder. So the most straightforward way to interpret it is as an adverb. Rough-spun could be a noun.

It could also be a pun, given the beginning of the next paraphragh (over there in that knot of gossipers) and its use of wonder, but I'm not sure we can credit such ingenuity to this author. On the other hand maybe so...

Now perhaps they were saying, over there in that knot of gossipers, the wonder of it! the holy Jormys had converted a Sihhe-lord… when he knew damned well Jormys had been afraid to go into that room and only Efanor had gone

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.