Monday, June 8, 2009

Words of the Day: What's the difference between ARTICULATED and RETICULATED?

I always considered myself to be an articulate person. More or less.

But when describing many of our antiques at C. Mariani, I'm constantly confusing the words "articulated" and "reticulated". Maybe I'm more reticulate than articulate.

Anyhow, here's the correct way to use and pronounce these words when describing antiques:

RETICULATED ( "ri TICK yuh lay ted"): means a decorative motif that looks like a net, cross-hatch, or trellis pattern. Another trade term for this motif is "diapering" (See my C. Mariani blog post on Why Can't Antique Dealers Talk Good English?).

Reticulation or diapering looks like this ground pattern on a 19th century gilded Italian wall bracket:
List price: $7,500 USD

ARTICULATED ("ahr TICK yuh lay ted"): means that a piece has moving parts, like this antique polychrome and wood devotional figure:

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