Words at Play

Ben Zimmer, the executive producer of Vocabulary.com and VisualThesaurus.com talks about notable words of 2013 in a Wall Street Journal article.  Many of the new words, he notes, are “portmanteau words.”  If you follow this blog, you know what that means.  If you’re not familiar with “portmanteau words,” you can find out about them here.

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“Because” is the American Dialect Society Word of the Year for 2013.  An ADS article talks about that word, and other notable words of the past year.

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Once upon a time there was no such thing as punctuation.  All words ran together, and all letters were in upper case.  Then someone decided that reading would be easier if we had symbols to tell us when sentences and paragraphs began and ended.  Then they became even more creative with such things as quotation marks, commas, and something called a pilcrow.  An article in The Weekly Standard tells us part of the story of the development of punctuation.

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Did you know that the letter E has died?  It has according to Wired magazine writer Joshua David Stein who has written an obituary for the 2,800 year old letter.

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