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The Horologicon: A Day's Jaunt Through the Lost Words of the English Languageby Mark Forsyth
Synopses & Reviews
Do you know why…
…a mortgage is literally a death pledge? …why guns have girls’ names? …why salt is related to soldier?
You’re about to find out…
The Etymologicon (e-t?-‘mä-lä-ji-kän) is:
*Witty (wi-te\): Full of clever humor
*Erudite (er-?-dit): Showing knowledge
*Ribald (ri-b?ld): Crude, offensive
The Etymologicon is a completely unauthorized guide to the strange underpinnings of the English language. It explains: how you get from “gruntled” to “disgruntled”; why you are absolutely right to believe that your meager salary barely covers “money for salt”; how the biggest chain of coffee shops in the world (hint: Seattle) connects to whaling in Nantucket; and what precisely the Rolling Stones have to do with gardening.
"In his latest linguistic endeavor, Forsyth (The Etymologicon) takes a day trip to the land of lost words, encountering obscure words in the course of a typical day. This is not a book to be gulped down at a sitting, but gently masticated to be savored in small bites. Arranged by activities appropriate to the hour of the day, Forsyth begins the day with the word Uhtceare, meaning 'lying awake before dawn and worrying' and moves all the way to night time with the phrase 'myoclonic jerk' referring to the twitch that occurs as your body drifts to sleep. There are few activities that Forsyth's wry wit doesn't cover. Though many of his terms are admittedly outdated, he cleverly appropriates them to modern time. Such when he discusses his most common form of email: e-mail of Uriah meaning 'a treacherous email, implying friendship but in reality a death warrant.' His irreverent commentary on the history of the terms and when to use them is worth reading even if one doesn't have the courage to declare it is quafftide ('the time of drink') among friends. Some words are borrowed from languages like Yiddish and Tillicum, where they are still used in daily conversation, but most are sadly forgotten English expressions. Every page contains a new jewel for logophiles and verbivores everywhere. (Oct.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
From classic poetry to pop lyrics, from Charles Dickens to Dolly Parton, even from Jesus to James Bond, Mark Forsyth explains the secrets that make a phrase—such as O Captain! My Captain!” or To be or not to be”—memorable.
In his inimitably entertaining and wonderfully witty style, he takes apart famous phrases and shows how you too can write like Shakespeare or quip like Oscar Wilde. Whether youre aiming to achieve literary immortality or just hoping to deliver the perfect one-liner, The Elements of Eloquence proves that you dont need to have anything important to say—you simply need to say it well.
In an age unhealthily obsessed with the power of substance, this is a book that highlights the importance of style.
Do you wake up feeling rough? Then youre philogrobolized.
Find yourself pretending to work? Thats fudgelling.
And this could lead to rizzling, if you feel sleepy after lunch. Though you are sure to become a sparkling deipnosopbist by dinner. Just dont get too vinomadefied; a drunk dinner companion is never appreciated.
The Horologicon (or book of hours) contains the most extraordinary words in the English language, arranged according to what hour of the day you might need them. From Mark Forsyth, the author of the #1 international bestseller, The Etymologicon, comes a book of weird words for familiar situations. From ante-jentacular to snudge by way of quafftide and wamblecropt, at last you can say, with utter accuracy, exactly what you mean.
About the Author
Mark Forsyth, author of The Horologicon and The Etymologicon, was given a copy of The Oxford English Dictionary as a christening present and has never looked back. He is the creator of The Inky Fool, a blog about words, phrases, grammar, rhetoric, and prose. He has contributed to the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Huffington Post. He lives in the UK.
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