2 3 4 5 6 Displaying 22-28 of 1127 Articles

As is the annual tradition, it is time once again to look back at the new and notable words of the past year. In 2015, could the most significant word have been a lowly pronoun?  Continue reading...
Click here to read more articles from Word Routes.

For the latest installment of Slate's podcast Lexicon Valley, I look at how the seemingly random number eighty-six became a verb meaning to get rid of something, thanks to a long-forgotten code of hash houses and soda-fountain lunch counters.  Continue reading...
Click here to read more articles from Word Routes.

It's almost the end of 2015, and a new frontrunner for Euphemism of the Year has emerged. In a Department of Justice press release, Attorney General Loretta Lynch wrote, "The Department of Justice is committed to giving justice-involved youth the tools they need to become productive members of society."

As Shakespeare put it, "Wow."  Continue reading...
Click here to read more articles from Evasive Maneuvers.

In 1948, the American journalist and language chronicler H.L. Mencken wrote an essay for The New Yorker, "Video Verbiage," in which he analyzed the lingo of the fledgling medium of television. Several of the words he gathered are now obsolete: vaudeo ("televised vaudeville"), televiewers (now just "viewers"), blizzard head (an actress so blonde that the lighting has to be toned down). Others are with us still, including telegenic and telecast. Nearly 70 years after Mencken published his essay, television itself is undergoing a massive redefinition, and so is our TV lexicon.  Continue reading...
Click here to read more articles from Candlepower.

The latest episode of Slate's podcast Lexicon Valley is a hoot and a half, as I take a look at the origins of hootenanny, a word that emerged from rural America with many meanings before finding fame as a name for folk-music gatherings.  Continue reading...
Click here to read more articles from Word Routes.

Intensive purposes? Slight of hand? Linguist Adam Cooper contemplates phrases whose meanings are in transition as we replace unfamiliar words fossilized with language that sounds more reasonable to our modern ears.  Continue reading...
Click here to read more articles from Word Count.

During the short-lived media celebrity of the recent "blood moon," I spent some Internet time bringing myself up to speed on the phenomenon—as I suspect many others did. My interest as a lexicographer was to investigate why this celestial event is called a blood moon; thinking in the literal way that I do, and knowing the color of blood, I was perplexed at the disconnect. Blood, of course, is red—deep, vivid, saturated red—and the moon was not. It achieved a kind of Marsy orange, but it was not red.  Continue reading...
Click here to read more articles from Language Lounge.

2 3 4 5 6 Displaying 22-28 of 1127 Articles