Century 1, 81 - Space Shuttle Disaster?

D'humain troupeau neuf seront mis a` part,
De iugement & conseil separez:
Leur sort sera diuise' en depart,
Kappa, Thita, Lambda mors bannis esgarez.

From the human flock nine will be sent away,
Separated from control and advice
Their fate will be sealed on departure
K-Th-L make a error; the dead banished


...nine will be sent away -> Actually, there were 7 crew members.

Separated from control and advice -> The ground controllers could do nothing. Contact was lost with the astronauts after the explosion. It is said that they may have survived for a period of time afterwards.

Their fate will be sealed on departure -> Videos show that flame was escaping while the rocket was still on the pad. Their fate was sealed from the instant of departure.

K-Th-L -> ThioKoL - manufacturer of the defective rocket engine. Vowels are omitted and two consonants transposed.


(sources: 1606 Fr. Dictionary; Webster's 9th Collegiate Dictionary)

troupeau -> company, group of animals, flock [related to Eng. "troop"]

mis -> from Latin "missus" pp. of "mittere" - to throw or send [related to Eng. missile]

a' part -> to the side [Eng. "apart" is derived directly]

iugement (jugement) -> from "jugier" (to judge) - a judgement, opinion, or decree [from Latin "jus" right + "dicere" to say/decide]

conseil -> advice, consultation

sort -> fate, fortune [related to Eng. "sortition" (to cast lots, 1597)]

diuise' (divise') -> from "diviser" - discerned; decided; divided (?)

depart -> from "departir" - departure

Kappa, Thita, Lambda - the greek letters K, Th, L

mors -> var. of "mourir" or "mort" - the dead [compare Latin mors, mortis]

bannis -> var. of "banir" - exiled or banished

esgarez -> from "esgarer" - [they] err or make a mistake

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