16 Sep '12, 12am

22 Surprising Word Origins (slideshow using OED data) via @Care2

22 Surprising Word Origins (slideshow using OED data) via @Care2

Do you think that etymology is boring? If so, well… this may convince you otherwise. The English language has a long and strange history, with Germanic roots that were heavily influenced by waves of Scandinavian and Norman French invaders, and which were later intermingled with plenty of Latin and Ancient Greek. Since then, English has borrowed words freely from every existing language family. While many words’ origins are exactly what you’d expect—for instance, the word chicken comes from the Old English word cicen , also meaning “chicken”—many other words have shifted away from their original meaning over the years. Sometimes that original meaning was more descriptive of the word in question, while other times the original and current meanings are related but strikingly different. Some etymologies are fascinating, some are baffling, and others are genuinely amusing. Read...

Full article: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/22-surprising-word-origi...

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