Dictionary projects can famously, and sometimes fatally, overrun. In the nineteenth century especially, dictionaries for the more recondite foreign languages of past and present (from Coptic to Sanskrit) were compiled by independent scholars, enthusiasts who were ready to dedicate their lives to a particular project. This may make for an exhaustively comprehensive text; it doesn’t […]
Borrowed words We all find at times that we reach for the words of others to express just what we want to say. Gleaming red berries through the fog of a September morning may remind the more literary of John Keats’s ‘season of mists, and mellow fruitfulness’. The Indian summer of 2011, on the other […]
What, a language quiz might ask, links acre as a name for a measure of land (recorded in Old English, and coming from Germanic) with the name of the Greek god Zeus? Or candy (with its Arabic ancestry) with pepper (coming to Europe via Greek)? The answer—all have related forms in Sanskrit—opens up a fascinating […]
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Do you know the Latin meaning of 'index'? Discover this and other Latin words still in common use... oxford.ly/1e7s237
This month’s new words update includes quite a few compound words, so we take a closer look at them... oxford.ly/XCBvwh
Word of the Day: epyllion - a narrative poem resembling an epic in style...... oxford.ly/1g9eo2v
ICYMI... Word of the Day: salmanazar - a wine bottle twelve times the standard size... oxford.ly/XzYWGo
Will you find today’s quiz about clichés a walk in the park? oxford.ly/1AdwdFk