Talk:of course

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The problem here is not so much definition but usage. The denotation is always something like "indisputably", but the connotations are subtle. Granted, any word can have variable connotation, but a term like of course is used almost exclusively for its connotations. This is what I'm trying to capture here, but I'm wondering if it might be better to have one basic definition and a usage note describing the various effects.

Any ideas? -dmh 15:06, 21 Oct 2004 (UTC)

I like the material you have here, but as you say - it's not clear that they are really separate definitions. I think at least we should have some basic definition indicating the historical contexts of the phrase, and its very close connection with the phrases as a matter of course and in the course of things ... I'll think about this some more ... to my mind the central meaning has to do with something being customary or natural or expected, often we can substitute the word naturally, for example
  • Naturally, I'll go with you.
  • Naturally, there will be a few problems along the way.
  • You will, naturally, surrender all your future rights to the property.
DavidL 15:33, 21 Oct 2004


I would like to know when in history the phrase "of course" came to mean naturally, or undisputably.

Etymology, you mean? Entomology is the science that studies insects. -- 23:10, 5 March 2010 (UTC)