Tag Archives: word origins

Do You Know These Words and Phrases?

Dead as a Doornail. The “doornail” is the plate or knocker upon which the hammer of a door knocker strikes. Phrases.org gives us this explanation on the origin of the phrase. In 1350,  William Langland used the phrase in a translation … Continue reading

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Do You Know These Words and Phrases?

These are some of the words and phrases I have encountered of late while reading. Some I knew the meaning and some I did not. Even when I knew the meaning, I was interested in the word’s origin or how … Continue reading

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Do You Know the Origin of These Words and Phrases?

Do You Know The Origin of These Words and Phrases? I have been editing again, as well as judging a few writing contests. The process had me searching out some of the least common words and phrases I encountered. Check … Continue reading

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From Where Does That Word Come?

We are back with more words and phrases with interesting origins.  Abracadabra is a late 17th Century word that was originally a mystical word engraved and used as a charm to ward off illness. Coming to us from Latin, it … Continue reading

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Word Origins? Are These Ones You’ve Used Incorrectly?

We had some great discussions on Facebook over the last patch of words I included in a post on word origins. Let us see if you find any of these appealing? Escort – This is a late 16th Century word … Continue reading

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Writing Historical Fiction? Should You Use That Particular Word?

I admit it: I am a bit of a word geek. I am fascinated with how words came into the English language. Some words make sense in their derivation, and others not so much so. Below are some of the … Continue reading

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Do You Know These Words and Phrases?

I am all about finding how words came into usage. How about you?  Crug is a Welsh word meaning hillock, cairn or barrow. Crug Hywel (called the Table Mountain in English) is a flat-topped hill at the southern edge of … Continue reading

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Are You Familiar with These Words and Phrases?

We have a variety of words that mean “stupid or foolish person” Ninnyhammer – First Known Use: 1592 Berk – The usage is dated to the 1930s. A shortened version of Berkeley Hunt, the hunt based at Berkeley Castle in … Continue reading

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The Lovely World of the English Language ~ Why Do People Speak as They Do?

In late February, I included a post on idioms and word play. It was a huge success, so I thought to revisit the format. “Aboveboard” – No, this one has nothing to do with ships or sailing. Actually, it comes … Continue reading

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