Dictionary of Word Origins
Published 14 Jan 2010
Words are the building blocks of language, but their derivations are often stories in themselves. Have you ever wondered why we wear perfume, read magazines, vote for candidates, speak in jargon? With entries from accolade to zoo and including such disparate items as blackmail, fiasco, influence and rigmarole, 'Dictionary of Word Origins' explains the origins and development of 300 commonly used words. Essays scattered throughout the book deal with more general topics such as 'A Taste of India', 'Days of the Week' and 'Precise Timing' and allow the authors to expand on broader themes. The result is an indispensable guide to the richness and diversity of the English language and an endless source of fascination for anyone who delights in words.
Linda and Roger Flavell have been studying the oddities of English for over 25 years. Linda has worked as a writer and as an English teacher both in England and overseas and has co-authored several dictionaries of etymologies for Kyle Books. Roger also travelled widely and was a Lecturer in Education at the Institute of Education, University of London.