The Accidental Dictionary: The Remarkable Twists and Turns of English Words

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The Accidental Dictionary: The Remarkable Twists and Turns of English Words by Paul Anthony Jones

How well do you know your words?

Buxom used to mean obedient

cloud was a rock

Raunchy originally meant dirty

Brimming with hidden histories and tantalising twists, The Accidental Dictionary tells the extraordinary stories behind ordinary words.

Our everyday language is full of surprises; its origins are stranger than you might think. Any word might be knocked and buffeted, subjected to twists and turns, expansions and contractions, happy and unhappy accidents. There are intriguing tales behind even the most familiar terms, and they can say as much about the present as they do the past.

Busking, for instance, originally meant piracyGrin meant to snarl. A bimbo was a mannice meant ignorantglamour was magic and a cupboard was a table...

Focusing on 100 surprising threads in the evolution of English, The Accidental Dictionary reveals the etymological origins and quirky developments that have led to the meanings we take for granted today. It is a weird and wonderful journey into words.

So, let's revel in its randomness and delight in its diversity - our dictionary is indeed accidental.

The Accidental Dictionary: The Remarkable Twists and Turns of English Words - About the Author

Paul Anthony Jones was born in South Shields in 1983. He is the author of four books: 'The British Isles: A Trivia Gazetteer' (2012); both 'Haggard Hawks & Paltry Poltroons' (2013) and its sequel, 'Jedburgh Justice & Kentish Fire' (2014); and language fact book 'Word Drops' (2015). 'Haggard Hawks' has since been featured in both The Guardian and The Huffington Post, and has spawned its own popular word-related Twitter account, @HaggardHawks, which was named one of Twitter's best language accounts by Mental Floss magazine in 2014. The daily word and language facts of the @HaggardHawks account inspired 'Word Drops: A Sprinkling of Linguistic Curiosities', published by Elliott & Thompson in April 2015.

Besides his interest in etymology and language, Paul is also a classically trained pianist. He lives in Jesmond in Newcastle upon Tyne, where he drinks far too much coffee and reads far, far too many books.

  • Language

    Miscellaneous

  • Book Binding

    Paperback

  • Book Dimensions

    12.4 x 1.9 x 19.4 cm

  • Book Format

    Unabridged

  • Book Genre

    Non Fiction

  • Book ISBN

    9781783964383

  • Book Page Count

    224

  • Book Publication Date

    13 Jun. 2019

  • Book Publisher

    Elliott & Thomas

  • Product Supplier

    Elliott & Thomas

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