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Tenants of the Church? - Words in the Heroes' Tongue
I have a variable-sword. I urge calm.
Tenants of the Church?
I keep coming across an error that drives me nuts; mixing up ‘tenants’ and ‘tenets’. Writers mention the ‘tenants’ of various religions and it’s not what they mean at all.

Tenants live in property owned by a landlord or an organisation. The tenants of the Catholic Church would live in church property, possibly farming lands owned by the church, and paying rent or doing service (in a Medieval setting) in return.

The beliefs and principles of a religion are its TENETS. The tenets of the Catholic Church are laid out in the Catechism and in Pope Paul VI’s ‘Creed of the People of God’.

Please, fic writers, stop confusing them because it results in your story confusing me. When a Forgotten Realms writer talks about the ‘tenants of Tyr’ I expect the writer then to mention peasant farmers, or perhaps an order of paladins housed in a Tyrran temple, not to go on about Truth and Justice and so on. If you obey the tenets you will defend the weak, punish the unrighteous, and uphold justice for all; if you obey the tenants you will mend the leaky roof, repair the holes in the access road, and fix the broken water-pump.

It’s a big difference.

Current Location: Middle Earth
Current Music: Jars of Clay, "Waiting for the World to Fall"

11 comments or speak 2 me
fenchurche From: fenchurche Date: March 2nd, 2012 06:17 am (UTC) (Link)
I've run across *rental contracts* that had them confused. No joke.
speakr2customrs From: speakr2customrs Date: March 2nd, 2012 06:55 am (UTC) (Link)
And the Prophet spake, saying, Thou shalt pay thy rent upon the eighteenth day of the month without fail. Thou shalt not paint the walls of thine abode, nor shalt thou change any of the furniture, without the consent of the Landlord. Thou shalt pay for thine own Electricity, and for thy Broadband, and thou shalt not skimp from rendering unto the Utility Companies their due. And thou shalt not park thine chariot in such a position that it blocks access to the property.

And the Landlord shalt keep the property in good repair, and shalt ensure that the water supply does not cease to flow, nor shalt the toilet become blocked without the Landlord sending workmen to restore it to its function. The Landlord shalt not increase thy rent without giving three months’ notice, nor shall he expel thee from thine abode without notice given three months hence, except in the case that thou hast not paid thy rent upon the day appointed.

These are the Tenets of the Rental Agreement; and the Prophet hast looked upon them and seen that they are Good.
(Deleted comment)
speakr2customrs From: speakr2customrs Date: March 2nd, 2012 03:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
Indeed it should; but, now that you've commented, I can't amend the comment to correct it.
gamiila From: gamiila Date: March 2nd, 2012 06:55 pm (UTC) (Link)
How about now? ;-)
speakr2customrs From: speakr2customrs Date: March 2nd, 2012 11:33 pm (UTC) (Link)
"You cannot edit this comment because someone has replied to it."
gamiila From: gamiila Date: March 3rd, 2012 06:59 pm (UTC) (Link)
kazzy_cee From: kazzy_cee Date: March 2nd, 2012 08:06 am (UTC) (Link)
And then if course there are long Scottish Tennants ;)
cat63 From: cat63 Date: March 2nd, 2012 08:22 am (UTC) (Link)
Oh dear. It's even worse, I think when the story is otherwise well written - I read a lot of stories recently by someone who was generally a pretty good writer, but consistently used "discrete" when they clearly meant "discreet" :(

On a similar note, the firm of solicitors in my village has a sign up in their window advertising that they deal with disputes between "landlord and tennant". Sigh.
vikingprincess From: vikingprincess Date: March 2nd, 2012 12:21 pm (UTC) (Link)
Preach it! LOL
ayinhara From: ayinhara Date: March 2nd, 2012 06:27 pm (UTC) (Link)
How right you are!
evilawyer From: evilawyer Date: March 4th, 2012 11:10 pm (UTC) (Link)
It's probably even worse than that. Consider how many rabid David Tennant fans have screwed up the spelling of both "tenant" and "tenet" because of their fascination.
11 comments or speak 2 me