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Re: MEANING OF "POINT BLANK" and thoughts about media phrases

Posted by Janes_kid on May 18, 2003

In Reply to: MEANING OF "POINT BLANK" posted by BillShope on May 17, 2003

: The expression, "point blank," is usually associated with the shooting of a target that is very close to the shooter, but the original meaning is not the same. In archery, the target was often a piece of white cloth. In target archery, one sighting technique is "point of aim." The archer notes the spot associated with his line of sight over the tip of his arrow while he is at "full draw," or ready to release the arrow. At a certain distance, that point will correspond to the target, itself. When the point falls on the white target, while aiming, it is "point de blanc." This distance, far from being short, could be as much as 80 yards or so.

US media (and perhaps others) seem to create their own vocabulary and use it over and over and over again. Examples that jump to mind are "point blank" for close, "harms way" for dangerous. A student who needs a project might create a website of such curiosities as "point blank" for "close".