Category Archives: Linguistics

20s Slang

I love dictionaries of all stripes, and this collection of slang from 1920s America proves why. We need to bring some of these terms back, and how! My faves: Chassis – the female body Fire extinguisher – a chaperone Giggle Water – An intoxicating beverage; alcohol Hayburner – (1) a gas guzzling car Spifflicated – […]

Posted in Linguistics | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Word of the Moment: Wellerism

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wellerism Wellerisms, named after Sam Weller in Charles Dickens‘s The Pickwick Papers, make fun of established proverbs by showing that they are wrong in certain situations, often when taken literally. In this sense, wellerisms that include proverbs are a type of anti-proverb. Typically a Wellerism consists of three parts: a proverb or saying, a speaker, […]

Posted in Linguistics | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Phatic – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phatic In linguistics, a phatic expression is one whose only function is to perform a social task, as opposed to conveying information… For example, “you’re welcome” is not intended to convey the message that the hearer is welcome; it is a phatic response to being thanked, which in turn is a phatic whose function is […]

Posted in Linguistics | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Mondegreen – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mondegreen Mondegreens are always good for a larf, but nothing beats the one that coined the phrase: When I was a child, my mother used to read aloud to me from Percy’s Reliques, and one of my favorite poems began, as I remember: Ye Highlands and ye Lowlands, Oh, where hae ye been? They hae […]

Posted in Linguistics | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

English Tongue Twisters | 1st International Collection of Tongue Twisters

http://www.uebersetzung.at/twister/en.htm Some of these tongue twisters are well known. Others are not terribly challenging. Some are downright impossible. This one, however, is both effective and amusing. There was a fisherman named Fisher who fished for some fish in a fissure. Till a fish with a grin, pulled the fisherman in. Now they’re fishing the fissure […]

Posted in Linguistics | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Holy Sprog Christmas Nativity spoof by Fast Shows Chanel 9

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W_d4Dxntv24 What better way to celebrate the holiday than with a star, a manger, three kings, some shepherds, and Charlie Higson in hotpants. You can keep your Boney M; I like my Christmas disco nonsensical and with plenty of facial hair.

Posted in Linguistics | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Jerry Lewis Goat

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bwy1qGdQ424 All of the pages offered by the Stumble button are depressing me. So I’m going rogue and picking my own. Here’s a goat that sounds like Jerry Lewis.

Posted in Linguistics | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Onomatopoeia – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Onomatopoeia Word of the moment: Onomatopoeia (occasionally spelled onomateopoeia or onomatopoeia) is a word or a grouping of words that imitates the sound it is describing, suggesting its source object, such as “click,” “clang,” “buzz,” or animal noises such as “oink”, “quack”, “flap”, “slurp”, or “meow”. The word is a synthesis of the Greek words […]

Posted in Linguistics | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Panjandrum | Define Panjandrum at Dictionary.com

http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=panjandrum Word of the Moment: Panjandrum, n. A self-important or pretentious official. [Origin: 1745-55; pseudo-Latin word (based on pan-) coined by Samuel Foote (1720-77), English dramatist and actor]

Posted in Linguistics | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Gracile | Define Gracile at Dictionary.com

http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=gracile Gracile, adj. 1. gracefully slender. 2. slender; thin. [Origin: 1615-25; < L gracilis slender, slight, thin]

Posted in Linguistics | Tagged | Leave a comment