1 2 3 4 5 Displaying 1-7 of 417 Articles


Like many four-letter words, poll is versatile. Where did it come from, and how did it come to be associated with voting?  Continue reading...
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Watch out — there's a new candidate for Euphemism of the Year! And this one just might be one of the sneakiest snakes.  Continue reading...
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I was delighted to learn recently of The Sifter - A Food History Research Tool, which is a gigantic online database of historical cookbooks. What I've been doing in The Sifter initially is a kind of time travel via language.  Continue reading...
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We say good-bye to 2010 by celebrating with a New Year's-themed crossword puzzle. Solve it and you could win a Visual Thesaurus T-shirt!  Continue reading...
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Blog Excerpts

Top 10 Language Stories of 2010

On his blog The Web of Language, Dennis Baron, a professor of English at the University of Illinois and a regular contributor to the Visual Thesaurus, runs down the top ten language-related stories of the past year, covering everything from a dictionary ban to a temple to the goddess English. Read the full list here.
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"Let there be light." "A fly in the ointment." "New wine in old bottles." "My brother's keeper." All of these familiar expressions entered English through the King James version of the Bible, which is about to turn 400 years old. In his new book Begat, David Crystal traces how, more than any other literary source in history, the King James Bible contributed to the stock of English idioms and proverbs.  Continue reading...
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1 2 3 4 5 Displaying 1-7 of 417 Articles