Prolix redefined

To be a judge in New Zealand is to wield substantial power. Here we have evidence that judicial power can reverse the meaning of a word.

The judgement in our case against NIWA said at paragraph 9:

Both the original statement of claim and the first amended statement of claim were prolix.

The word “prolix” comes from the Latin “prolixus”, which means “extended” (literally “poured out”) or “courteous, favourable”. It has come to mean “tediously lengthy, bombastic, long-winded, verbose, wordy.”

It’s not used as a compliment. When a judge describes your submission as prolix he’s saying “your explanatory skills are poor, you waffle and you have wasted much of my time.” Continue Reading →