The copy-editor’s dilemma #8
We return to the obscure but delightful English words that French author Jean-Christophe Valtat uses in his novel Aurorarama – words that had our copy-editor reaching for her dictionary.
apperceive: to make sense of an idea by assimilating it to the body of ideas he or she already possesses.
apercevoir (to perceive, or to spot) is a rather common word in French – so its use is a bit of a Gallicism. In English, it has a more philosophical, mental connotation linked to memory that suits me fine. In New Venice inner life is as important as “real” life.