It’s a nice idea, but the two words are in fact quite separate. Ostrich comes from an Old French word ostruce, dating right back to the twelfth century. The Latin term for the bird was struthiocamelus, meaning a ‘sparrow camel’, a word coined after the first encounters with ostriches, probably because of the animal’s long […]
Taking a first glance at a list of recent additions to a dictionary, most of us will instinctively seek out the very new. Sometimes it’s their simple sparkle of novelty that attracts – the latest updates to Oxford Dictionaries Online include ‘upcycling’, ‘surveilling’ and ‘wantaway’; others engage through the picture they give of the world […]
Let’s hear a woot (or not?) for the Big Society! Each year, as the announcement of Oxford’s Word of the Year approaches, I’m reminded of some words from the playwright Dennis Potter: ‘the trouble with words is that you never know whose mouth they’ve been in’. I sometimes wonder whether that’s why I like new […]
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ICYMI: Word of the Day: vicarious - experienced in the imagination through another person's feelings…... oxford.ly/1yweBmm
Did John F. Kennedy call himself a jam doughnut when he said 'Ich bin ein Berliner'? Here's the answer: oxford.ly/1BTHkYa
Click through our timeline to discover the history and language of smoking: oxford.ly/11yQgkO
Read about the day John F. Kennedy did NOT call himself a jam doughnut: oxford.ly/1BTHkYa
From smoke to vape: learn about the history of tobacco with this timeline oxford.ly/11yQgkO