The Unexpected Evolution of Language: Discover the Surprising Etymology of Everyday Words

The Unexpected Evolution of Language: Discover the Surprising Etymology of Everyday Words

by Justin Cord Hayes
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

This book is awesome awful!

Did you know that "awful" first originated as a compliment? How about the fact that it was perfectly fine for someone to defecate in their living room? Or that at one time a bully was actually a sweetheart?

You may think that these things sound outlandish, but hundreds of years ago, the words "awful,"

Overview

This book is awesome awful!

Did you know that "awful" first originated as a compliment? How about the fact that it was perfectly fine for someone to defecate in their living room? Or that at one time a bully was actually a sweetheart?

You may think that these things sound outlandish, but hundreds of years ago, the words "awful," "defecate," and "bully" meant something entirely different than what we know today. The Unexpected Evolution of Language reveals the origins of 208 everyday terms and the interesting stories behind their shift in meaning.

Arranged in alphabetical order, you will enjoy uncovering the backstories to terms like:

  • Awful - worthy of respect or fear; inspiring awe
  • Bimbo - slang for a stupid, inconsequential man
  • Defecate - to purify; cleanse
  • Invest - to clothe; to dress
  • Nice - foolish; stupid
  • Relay - hunting term meaning fresh pack of hounds

From "aftermath" and "sophisticated" to "empty" and "prestige," you will aboslutely love seeing just what kind of damage time has done to the English language.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781440542794
Publisher:
F+W Media
Publication date:
09/18/2012
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
240
File size:
2 MB

Related Subjects

Meet the Author

Justin Cord Hayes, coauthor of The Big Book of Words You Should Know and Roget's Thesaurus of Words for Intellectuals, is an experienced journalist and teacher. He lives in North Carolina.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >