It is commonly said that no word in the English language rhymes with orange. This amuses the people in Wales who live near the hill named Blorenge.
Have you ever been at a loss to describe your feelings when you see an utterly adorable kitten or a supremely-cuddly puppy? If you lived in the Philippines, you wouldn’t struggle. In […]
If you were accused of being a macroverbumsciolist, how would you plead? If you answered without knowing what the word means, you probably should have pleaded guilty. A macroverbumsciolist is a person […]
English is a language of exceptions, with few concrete rules. When it comes to adjectives, however, there is a very specific hierarchy most English speakers know, instinctively, must be followed to avoid utter confusion. […]
Although English is not the hardest language to master (see this post for ten languages that are even harder), it frequently presents problems, even for its native speakers. Consider the problem with […]
The Vatican Bank (officially known as the Institute for the Works of Religion) is the only bank in the world that allows the user to select “Latin” as the language of choice. […]
The next time you are in Denmark and see a traffic sign that says, “Fartkontrol”, don’t be so quick to hold your nose and snicker. It actually is warning you that the […]
Queen Victoria (1819-1901) took her responsibilities as Empress of India quite seriously. On her 70th birthday she undertook lessons in Hindustani and got to the point where she wrote in Hindustani in […]
Aristophanes (427 BC – 386 BC) was groundbreaking with his plays. His skills as a satirist and as a keen observer of everyday life led him to give us one of the […]
You can tell a lot about what concerns people by looking at their language. Eskimos have many words for snow. The ancient Greeks had six words for love. It doesn’t take a […]
When it comes to studying languages, many turn their attention to the most-commonly spoken languages of the world. Fully 25% of the world’s population claim Mandarin Chinese, Hindi, Spanish, or English as […]
There is one word in the English language that changes its meaning and pronounciation, depending on whether it is capitalized: polish. Uncapitalized, polish refers to a substance used to give something a smooth and […]
Why would you need to know about oxyphenbutazone? If you have an interest in medicine, you need to know it as a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug. If you are a Scrabble player, however, you definitely […]
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Do you know anyone who cuts his or her own hair? If you do, you may properly refer to that person as an autotonsorialist.