Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The Joys of Our Truly Global Language


In case you missed it, the one millionth word passed into the English language sometime around last week, according to Telegraph writer Simon Winchester.
If you've never heard of autopeotomy, nor still linked the word with Dr James Murray, two elderly lexicographers at Oxford station, or Simon Winchester himself, you may shudder a little and cross your legs, especially if you are a man, but you'll gain some insight into how words gain currency and enter the language.
While there may be some lingering reason for the continued use of the word - the event it describes happens from time to time! - can you honestly see 'Phelpsian' and 'wonderstar' lasting the course?
Picture from the OUP.

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