Oxford Dictionary of Word Origins
Combining both accessibility and authority, the Oxford Dictionary of Word Origins describes the origins and development of over 3,000 words and phrases in the English language. The book draws on Oxford's unrivalled dictionary research programme and language monitoring, and relates the fascinating stories behind many of our most curious terms and expressions in order to offer the reader a much more explicit account than can be found in a general English dictionary. Organized A-Z, the entries include first known use along with examples that illustrate the many faces of the particular word or phrase, from 'handsome' to 'bachelor' and 'cute' to 'baby', from 'pagan' to 'palaver' and 'toff' to 'torpedo'. Also featured are almost 20 special panels that cover expressions common in English but drawn from other languages, such as 'coffee', 'sugar', and 'candy' from Arabic or 'booze', 'brandy', and 'gin' (Dutch). This absorbing volume is useful for language students and enthusiasts, but also an intriguing read for any person interested in the development of the English language and of language development in general. Includes an extended introduction on the history of the English language.
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American ancient root Anglo-Saxon animal Arabic associated back to Latin based on Latin became bird British called colour comes from Latin comes from Old comes via Old current sense dates derives described developed dialect different word Dutch early 19th early 19th century early 20th early sense ecclesiastical Latin expression ﬁgure ﬁlm ﬁnd ﬁre ﬁrst appeared ﬁrst found ﬁrst meant ﬁrst recorded ﬁsh French from Latin French word gave Gospel of Matthew horse idea inﬂuenced Italian language late 16th century late 19th late Latin late Middle English later Latin from Greek Latin word literally medieval Latin mid 19th century Middle Ages modern sense noun ofﬁcial Old English word Old French Old Norse originally meant originally referred person phrase proverb reﬂected Roman Scottish Gaelic Shakespeare’s shortening slang someone someone’s Spanish speciﬁcally spelling term ultimately variant verb word comes word meaning WORD PANEL YIDDISH