October 4, 2010
The copy-editor’s dilemma #5
Once again we introduce you to the delightful and arcane vocabulary of Aurorarama that frequently baffled our poor copy-editor.
Today’s word is apport: the production of objects by apparently supernatural means at a spiritualists’ seance.
Author Jean-Christophe Valtat describes how he came across the term:
I encountered the word for the first time in Marina Warner‘s great book, Phantasmagoria. It is used in Aurorarama figuratively for the memories of a dream, but literally, in the spiritists’ jargon, an “apport” is an object made from concentrated fluid and materialized by the medium: flowers, cast limbs etc… In Allan Kardec‘s Book of Mediums, a spirit, “Eraste,” avows good-naturedly that these mystical objects are rather “boring and tiring” to make.