What is a ‘loge’?

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Increase your vocabulary and you’ll make your writing much more precise. That’s why I provide a word of the week. Today’s word: loge….

When I read the very amusing book The White Angel by John MacLachlan Gray, I encountered a word that was new to me, loges. Here is how Gray used it:

Miss Hawthorn has chosen the loges section [of a movie theatre] to the left, with its private seating.

Obviously, the word had something to do with seating but I couldn’t visualize exactly what that was. In any case, it turns out that a loge is either a private box in a theatre or the front section of the first balcony.

The etymology of the word is interesting. It comes from the French word loge, meaning an arbor or covered walk-way.” This, in turn, comes from the Frankish (a West Germanic language spoken between the 4th and 8th centuries) laubija, meaning shelter.”  The words lobbyloggialeaf and lodge are all related.

The photo at the top of this post shows a series of loges in the famous old state Opera house in Budapest, Hungry.  The building was designed by Miklos Ybl with the construction lasting from 1875 to 1884. It was funded by Emperor Franz Joseph of Austria-Hungary.

An earlier version of this post first appeared on my blog on Oct. 9/19.

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