Etymology Meets Mythology in Michael Meade’s New Essay Series
Most people think of a talent as a gift, an ability that a person simply has because they were born with it. Some wish they were more talented and many envy the talent that others seem to take for granted or carry so effortlessly. Having a talent for it can make doing something seem so easy; yet the oldest roots of talent stretch back to verbs meaning “to bear, to carry, to weigh.” A talent can carry a person far in life; it can also carry them far astray, think of all the stars and starlets who lose all sense of self when it seems that they have all they could ever want. A talent can become a heavy weight to bear.
The weighty side of talent comes from the Greek talanton, meaning "a balance, a set of scales," hence "a weight or anything weighed." In many ancient societies a talent referred to a counterbalance, a weight used to measure precious metals like gold or silver on a scale. In later times it became the name for a sum of money as in ancient Athens where a talent of silver was the amount paid for nine years of work by skilled craftsmen. People have always tried to put a price on talents and skills, often to the detriment of those who carry them from birth.Continue Reading the Ety-mythology of Talent
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Fate and Destiny