Word of the Day

Friday, November 26, 2004


\pas-TEESH; pahs-\ , noun;
A work of art that imitates the style of some previous work.
A musical, literary, or artistic composition consisting of selections from various works.
A hodgepodge; an incongruous combination of different styles and ingredients.
The figure was a pastiche, assembled from fragments: a Greek head, a Roman imperial cuirass, and halo, limbs, weapons, and crocodile fashioned by a Venetian craftsman.
-- Patricia Fortini Brown, Venice and Antiquity
Whoever said the unexamined life is not worth living apparently never intended to go into book publishing, where there is almost no research and where much of the conventional wisdom is a pastiche of folklore, myth and wishful thinking.
-- Edwin McDowell, "Publishing: And They All Said It Wouldn't Sell", New York Times, February 6, 1989
Rather, the aim is to create a composite reflection of how New York got this way, how its bridges and subways were built, how its power structure and political culture evolved, how its pastiche of unique neighborhoods developed, collapsed and rose again, and how some of its citizens survive on the bottom rung and others succeed or fail on the top.
-- Sam Roberts, "The 10 Best Books About New York", New York Times, February 5, 1995
Pastiche comes from Italian pasticcio, "a paste," hence "a hodgepodge, literary or musical," ultimately from Latin pasta, "paste."
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