Gerundive form of Latin verb deurere (to burn down/up/out; to consume).

Deurendis: to be burned. To feel injustices one will never forget. To stay vigilant against their recurrence. And to hold the promise of a shelter that is warm, a hearth for cooking, and energies to make the most drastic transformations.

Many things now standing are to be burned down. Things once possessed are to be burned up. Fires stoked, and the persons tending them, become burned out. But what about the embers that are saved, held close, and carried, to be rekindled elsewhere? When can burnout become a burning inward?

And how to occupy land, and occupy oneself, to dwell upon one’s place, in a world that is quite literally burning before our eyes? One possibility: to fight fire with fire.

Latin grammars note there is no true equivalent to the gerundive in English. It can denote the present participle used adjectivally or adverbially, the closest translation being a passive to-infinitive non-finite clause such as “books to be read.” To convey the sense of obligation inherent in its meaning, translations often include such forms as ‘fit to be’, ‘must be,’ and ‘ought to be’.

Here we continue to learn the differences between what is fit to be, what must be, what ought to be.


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