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to teach one’s grandmother to suck eggs


Original illustration for Of the Swine in The History of Four-footed Beasts and Serpents (1658), by Edward Topsell



The phrase to teach one’s grandmother to suck eggs… 840 more words





According to the National Museum of the Royal New Zealand Navy, in 1731 rum was made an official issue to seamen and the daily half pint was issued in two equal parts, one in the morning and the other in the evening.  1,130 more words


Thursday, 6th October 2016

A Short Dictionary for the Metrically Challenged Poet (words labelled ‘stress variable’ in the OED):

  • devolatilised: ‘ less volatile’
  • masthead: ‘The title, motto, or similar device, of a newspaper or journal’
  • 71 more words

Dot Wordsworth on "niche"

Dot Wordsworth talks about “niche” – “an English word that turned into a French one” – in the Mind Your Language column in The Spectator, … 49 more words


Jingeri. There's an app for that!


You arrive at camp only to find you there are elders from a far off group and you need an icebreaker. Your laptop takes too long to boot and you only have a few minutes to come up with a few words to help build bridges. 184 more words



The Ranz des Vaches – from A Complete Dictionary of Music (1779)



The term ranz-des-vaches denotes a type of Swiss melody, traditionally played on the Alpenhorn or sung in order to call cows scattered over the mountainside. 588 more words


Ossuary for Glosses

By dissecting the words we like, without bothering about conforming either to their etymologies or to their accepted significations, we discover their most hidden qualities and the secret ramifications that are propagated through the whole language, channeled by associations of sounds, forms and ideas.

47 more words