7 8 9 10 11 Displaying 57-63 of 118 Articles

The National Museum of Language near Washington, D.C. is putting together an exhibit on the role of the War of 1812 in the development of American English, as we approach that war's bicentennial (or bicentenary, as they still say on the other side). In the Lounge we've been exploring ideas with the museum, and this month we wanted to share some of our findings.  Continue reading...

At a scenic dropoff near the Lounge, whereunder flows the mighty torrent of English, we have lookouts posted whose job is to spot trends. Recently they have reported back on instances of a certain class of words that are ready for a closeup: a handful of nouns formed by fusing the two parts of a phrasal verb. Such words are legion in English (setback, breakdown, frameup, washout, etc.) but we lack a handy term to designate them: snaptos? pairups? glueons? In any case, this month's Lounge is a rundown of our lookouts' pickups.  Continue reading...

A rose by any other name is . . . possibly hex FF E4 E1 or decimal 255 228 225. This month in the Lounge we look at the business and the pleasure of color names in English.  Continue reading...

The Language Lounge removed to the Netherlands for a short break last month, with the specific mission of observing several of the various putative Dutch contributions to English on their native soil: Dutch courage, Dutch uncles, Dutch ovens, Dutch auctions, Dutch doors, Dutch hoes, and Dutch treats, to name a few.  Continue reading...

In high school we studied a poem by Robert Frost called "Design." It deposited enduring fragments that echo in our mind from time to time, and recently we spent a quiet afternoon in the Poetry Corner of the Lounge to revisit the poem.  Continue reading...

As a remedy for the summer doldrums, the Loungeurs have taken up deep questions this month: space, time, space-time, and language.  Continue reading...

We left off last month on the horns of the dictionary publishers' dilemma: how do you keep a flagship title in print when it costs far more to produce it than it will ever generate in sales? We noted the lure of electronic licensing rights as a factor that might influence the way dictionaries are put together and marketed in the future; and we heard from a few readers who, not unpredictably, lamented any future in which dictionaries in book form were not available.  Continue reading...

7 8 9 10 11 Displaying 57-63 of 118 Articles