December 11, 2006

Word etymology

Yep, another one for the word nerds. I just DIG this site, the Online Etymology Dictionary. "Etymologies are not definitions; they're explanations of what our words meant and how they sounded 600 or 2,000 years ago."

When you're just dying to know where the word "moot" comes from (and no, it's not a mispronunciation of "mute"), go to this site. Do you wonder where the word "tattoo" originated? Check out this site. Did you ever wonder what it means to take a "potshot"? Here you go:

1858, "shot taken at animal simply to kill for food," in other words, to get it in the pot, not for sporting or marksmanship. Extended sense of "opportunistic criticism" first recorded 1926.

Cool, huh? And you can sponsor a word as well. Check out the list of sponsored words here. Perhaps I should sponsor "pontificate". . .

You'll never have to wonder again why "scarf" is something you wear around your neck, and also something you do to your movie popcorn. Enjoy!

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