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 Myths, rituals, and beliefs are models, deployed to enforce social, political, and cultural norms. Maps, plans, and blueprints are models, drafted to navigate and create natural and artificial environments. Words, signs, and notations are models, encoded to convey our thoughts and feelings to ourselves and each other. In short: models model model models—which means what, exactly? Historical linguistics—the etymology of words and philology of languages—untangles the interwoven lexical semantics of meaning. In what we now call English, branches once divergent converged into cognate sets such as warranty/guarantee and ward/guard/yard. If in English we say that a warden guards yards and a garden wards wares, their shared root in Proto­-Indo-European gives us *wer *wer *wer and *wer *wer *wer—a base verb meaning: to cover or enclose.  In pursuit of “linguistic fossils” (Jackendoff), if we cannot chase long­-gone chariots over steppe and vale to the Urheimat of the PIE speakers, we can re­-trace a great many criss-crossed tracks. English is, so to speak, the ‘Post-Indo-European’ tongue; it speaks of forked paths through a score of languages—for instance, already struck with mania ‘fad, craze’ from Greek by way of Old French, we re­-modeled medical mania ‘hyperactivity, madness’ on Late Latin. Shared pasts return to share in the present via multi­-millennial detours. Recursive (turned back) reflexes or reflex terms are rejoined into semantic fields: as a mind is mental, a mode is moody. Our ‘model’ verbs express a tension in our ‘active’ and ‘passive’ mentation that projects beyond the written record. As in fig.7 (over), the *m­- base verbs comprise a massive metamodel of the mind’s insight minded in and of itself. While Protagoras had proclaimed that “Man is the measure,” Plato saw a self­-exception in the manner that we measure as we are measured, that we model as we are modeled. At the dawn of modernity, Nicolas Cusanus reframed Plato’s problem in terms of perspective and proportionality, whereby mensura [...] as the essence of number, is the first exemplar of the mind.” As Dalibor Vesely reads therein, “because measure is the main characteristic of proportion, the association of human mind and measure also speaks about the proportional structure of mind; and because proportion, as we have seen, is also the essence of perspectivity, the structure of the human mind is in Cusanus’s understanding perspectival.”

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