Sunday, November 26, 2017

Another word connotation: amanuensis

   We have other connotations for the word *"amanuensis" relevant to the secretarial, academic, religious, job titles in the commercial sector, and the Executive Office of the President of the United States.
   Moreover this is my favorite word, but it’s not easy to find unless you know how to spell it, because even the most popular thesauruses don’t show it in the listings for secretary or administrative assistant.
   For a word that **originated in Rome to describe a slave at his master’s reach, "amanuensis" has come a long way toward more modern times, with a meaning to indicate managing schedules, staff and a close aide to the President, therefore precursor to White House Chief of Staff.

   However, at the beginning of our country's foundation, Presidents like Thomas Jefferson had one secretary with the title of "amanuensis," and up to James Buchanan, those secretaries were paid personally so this was position given to a relative, but James Polk appointed his wife.
   And from "amanuensis" to **Secretary to the President and further to the many included office personnel aspect duly legislated by Congress in 1939 during Franklin Roosevelt’s second term with the official title, Executive Office of the President, with all included reporting directly to the White House Office.

   More interestingly, the sole "amanuensis" title was expanded from **Secretary to the President to include more than one as well as a photographer and other office personnel.
   When used in the 20th century as Secretary the President, the historical context is well documented.
   At the head of the list of those "amanuensis" who were upgrades yet best known from their affiliation to a President of the United States, oddly, the most faithful and best known Secretary to the President was the long term personal secretary to Richard Nixon, ****Mary Rose Woods.
   Although Ms. Rose is famous for her ***long arm reach that somehow managed to erase a portion of the Nixon White House tapes, which per her testimony during the Watergate scandal was totally unplanned and not directed by the embattled President Nixon, who resigned rather than be impeached.  
   Now in 2017, POTUS 45 has elevated his long term assistant Hope Hicks into the Executive Office of the President, to become part of the historical record, and no doubt Wikipedia will devote a special reference to her, because she has to testify about what she knows about the Trump campaign’s possible Russian collusion to the Special Counsel Robert Mueller. 
   And per the upgraded aspect of the original "amanuensis," Ms. Hicks has recently assumed the position of White House Director of Communications, which puts her within the organizational chart of the congressional directive re Executive Office of the President.    
   Nevertheless, unless the moral progress of mankind regresses backward, don’t expect the word "amanuensis" to refer to a slave within arms reach ever again, in fact, by the end of the 21st century, it might be that this "amanuensis" word will no longer be in use, and the connotation in all its aspects re "Executive Secretary" will be more normally known as "Executive Assistant."

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