Search found 7853 matches

by Archived Topic
Sat Dec 11, 2004 8:47 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: Draconian
Replies: 4
Views: 3170

Draconian

Because this word is often spelt without a capital 'D', I long assumed it was an adjective from 'dragon', in all senses. Having never heard of Draco, though understanding 'Dickensian' and 'Machiavellian'. Like bovine, assinine, waspish, porcine and thousands more animal adjectives (but not 'sluggish...
by Archived Topic
Sat Dec 11, 2004 3:54 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: jacked up in your widgers
Replies: 18
Views: 2221

jacked up in your widgers

(Or maybe "wigers"?) I've been doing an English lit course in Bradford for 2 months and it's impossible! I've got this lunatic tutor who seems to hate Asians and all he tries to do is to confuse me...I'm sure. Now I've been set this essay to do based on this phrase. He won't even tell me what it mea...
by Archived Topic
Sat Dec 11, 2004 2:21 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: alright geyser/geezer
Replies: 3
Views: 1520

alright geyser/geezer

Does anyone have any ideas how this epithet (geyser) emerged? It's been in commom usage for ages, but no one I've chatted to seems to know much about it. I've heard it said that it relates to someone who "spouts-off a lot" but that seems a bit thin to me. "Diamond geyser" is used universally in area...
by Archived Topic
Sat Dec 11, 2004 1:14 am
Forum: Miscellaneous
Topic: mispronunciation of French
Replies: 4
Views: 2494

mispronunciation of French

MISPRONUNCIATION AND ACCEPTABLE ANGLICIZATIONS OF FRENCH WORDS Americans frequently mispronounce French words and this is sometimes due to misconceptions about French, which is not a phonetic language. A: 1) Americans often think that final consonants or consonant sounds are usually not pronounced, ...
by Archived Topic
Fri Dec 10, 2004 11:54 pm
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: mighty white of you
Replies: 4
Views: 4742

mighty white of you

Obvious racial overtone. What is a term for a slur like this, so ingrained that its user doesn't realize it's a form of bigotry
Submitted by dale hileman (Apple Valley, CA - U.S.A.)
by Archived Topic
Fri Dec 10, 2004 11:01 pm
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: tear
Replies: 2
Views: 846

tear

How can a word eg. TEAR have 2 different meaning??
Submitted by suneeta K (singapore - Singapore)
by Archived Topic
Mon Dec 06, 2004 2:41 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: Kiwi
Replies: 10
Views: 1220

Kiwi

What is the origin of the nickname kiwi given to new-zealanders?
Submitted by Dark Tundra (Melbourne - Australia)
by Archived Topic
Mon Dec 06, 2004 1:44 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: bonehead
Replies: 2
Views: 815

bonehead

Anyone know its origins? It's not a word one hears very much in England.

Rob
Submitted by Robert Masters (Asia - Thailand)
by Archived Topic
Mon Dec 06, 2004 1:01 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: canny / uncanny
Replies: 2
Views: 3116

canny / uncanny

I am wondering about the correct definitions of canny and uncanny. I could be wrong, but in my belief, "uncanny" is not the opposite of "canny", which to me is strange, and I am curious about the origins of this. No doubt someone will provide me with a perfectly reasonable explanation and I will app...
by Archived Topic
Mon Dec 06, 2004 12:17 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: gonzo
Replies: 2
Views: 1509

gonzo

In the previous posting ‘find his straps,’ I mentioned that I was looking at the etymology of the word gonzo , a word I had heard many times, but which I neither knew the precise meaning of nor its origin. Here’s what I found: GONZO (originally and chiefly U.S.) [1970s and still in use]: 1) adjectiv...
by Archived Topic
Sun Dec 05, 2004 5:34 pm
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: hit his straps
Replies: 2
Views: 2609

hit his straps

I was reading an article on the etymology of the word ‘gonzo’ by a professor at Queensland University in which he said the following: “In contrast, the early sixties were a lean time for Thompson. HST [[journalist and author Hunter S. Thompson (1939– ) and coiner of the word]]. He didn’t HIT HIS STR...
by Archived Topic
Sun Dec 05, 2004 4:22 pm
Forum: Miscellaneous
Topic: forte
Replies: 5
Views: 2541

forte

I know someone asked this question in 1998, but the answer was incorrect, they said the word was from Italian so for-tae would be correct, but the word came to english from the French, from Latin fortis meaning strong. I was taught for-tae ,but I hear it as fort more often. What is correct, if there...
by Archived Topic
Sun Dec 05, 2004 3:39 pm
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: nadryv / nadrif / nadriff
Replies: 2
Views: 1800

nadryv / nadrif / nadriff

I am trying to recall a word similar to NADRIF or NADRIFF used by Fyodor Dostoevsky in one of his works; I believe it was "Crime and Punishment". It expressed consternation I believe. It was similar to Nadrif or Nadraf? It has been driving me nuts and I cannot find any reference to it anywhere. Of c...
by Archived Topic
Sun Dec 05, 2004 1:15 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: dove
Replies: 2
Views: 1789

dove

What have you guys done to the past tense of the verb "to dive"?

"The dove dove from the sky," instead of "the dove dived from the sky"?

"I dive". I dived". Why "dove"?

Rob
Submitted by Robert Masters (Asia - Thailand)
by Archived Topic
Sun Dec 05, 2004 7:58 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: "come bye" and "away to me"
Replies: 1
Views: 1930

"come bye" and "away to me"

The expressions, "come-bye" and "away to me" are used as commands in sheep dog herding and trialing in the UK and North America. The term, "come-bye" requires that the border collie travel in a clock-wise direction around the sheep. And, the term, "away" or "away to me" refers to travel in a counter...