John Donne's poem The Undertaking, published in the early 17th century, suggests that forgetting the he and she would be "a braver thing than all the Worthies did." In a way, that is the same problem that's currently being considered in a case before the U.S. Supreme Court.  Continue reading...
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October marks the centenary of the Volstead Act, the enabler of Prohibition. This occasion licenses the Language Lounge to pop the corks a bit early and look at the linguistic legacy of the Prohibition era.  Continue reading...
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A valuable new tool has become available for linguists — armchair and professional alike — to explore the language of contemporary news.  Continue reading...
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Metaphors about space come at us so thick and fast in talking about the digital world that we don't even notice that they are there, and that's probably a good thing: it helps us to make sense of complicated phenomena.  Continue reading...
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Because Internet: Understanding the New Rules of Language is a sparkling new book by the linguist Gretchen McCulloch whose title is both a description and an example of one of the "new rules."  Continue reading...
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If you ask me to complete the phrase "hotter than ________", "July" is what comes to my mind first. The calendar inspires the subject of this month's column, which I might characterize as "uses and abuses of the comparative".  Continue reading...
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Lexicography has been and continues to be a gig occupation for many who do it, and that is the case for Charles Sanders Peirce. One place he found work was in writing definitions for the Century Dictionary, which may be the greatest dictionary you've never heard of.  Continue reading...
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