Vocabulary

Extirpation

If an animal goes to sleep during cold periods it is called hibernation. If an animal goes to sleep during hot periods it is called estivation. Because climate and geography influence language there is often not a word for both of them… Read More ›

Spotted Richard

I see the House of Commons has changed the name of their Spotted Dick to Spotted Richard, in order to avoid embarrassing people. The etymology of Spotted Dick Whilst the first part of the name is self-apparent – the dessert… Read More ›

A tree full of nope

as my friend Marie said…. These are two of South Africa’s most venomous snakes, a female boomslang to the left (seen because the female boomslang is brown and the male is green) and a black mamba to the right. It… Read More ›

The Euphemism Treadmill

I thought this was very interesting because over the years I have seen word after word become offensive. Any word used to describe something towards which people are prejudiced inevitably becomes negatively loaded. If you replace that word without doing anything… Read More ›