meaning of race
- One of many meanings of race from the OED. I found this one
interesting because it has nothing to do with either heredity or
II. A group or class of persons, animals, or things, having some
common feature or features.
8. a. A set or class of persons.
1500-20 DUNBAR Poems xxvi. 50 Bakbyttaris of sindry racis. a1568 R.
ASCHAM Scholem I. (Arb.) 66 His onely example had breed such a rase
of worthie learned ientlemen, as this Realme neuer yet did affourde.
c1580 SIDNEY Ps. XII. i, Ev'n the race of good men are decai'd. a1611
BEAUM. & FL. Maid's Trag. IV. ii, You preserve A race of idle people
here about you, Facers and talkers. 1712 BUDGELL Spect. No. 404 3 To
this Affectation the World owes its whole Race of Coxcombs. 1748
THOMSON Cast. Indol. I. lii, The race of learned men, Still at their
books. 1821 LAMB Elia Ser. 1, The Two Races of Men, The men who
borrow, and the men who lend. 1875 JOWETT Plato (ed. 2) V. 56 There
arose a new race of poets..who made pleasure the only criterion of
Note in particular the last 3 examples: I have certainly run into the
two races of men, "The men who borrow, and the men who lend."
Perhaps they are forerunners of Steiner's prediction of two races in
the future, one evil and one good? I was puzzled by some of the
peculiar reactions to that quote as it is obvious that his use of the
word "race" in that context had nothing to do with physical
attributes or with appearance. But "obvious" is in the eye of the
Anyone else have a word they would like defined?