Random English Words And How They Got Their Meaning – Part One

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Echo – In Greek mythology Echo has a mountain Nymph who used to facilitate the King Zeus’s philandering by telling his wife Hera long winded stories to distract her attentions away form his activities. When Hera discovered the deception, she took away Echo’s voice except for the repletion of the words of another.

Paper – Ancient Egyptians used beaten strips of a plant to make their writing materials. The name of this plant was papyrus from which we derive the modern word paper.

Denim. A study French fabric called serge came was used to create hard wearing clothes. The part of France which with it came was Nimes and the fabric was know as serge de Nimes which was shortened to de Nimes and ultimately to denim.

Dandelion – this common flowers leaves were considered to resemble the tooth of a lion which in French is rendered dent de lion. Over time this became corrupted to dandelion

Lunatic –Folklore linked madness with the phases of the moon. The Latin for Moon is Luna and hence the terms lunatic and lunacy are derived from it.

Hysteria – A state of mind characterised by unmanageable fear and emotional extremes was considered to be strictly the province of women due to changes within the uterus. The Greek for uterus being Hystera leads to the evolution of the words Hysteria, Histrionics, Hysterics and Hysterical.

This way for part two – http://www.bukisa.com/articles/346387_random-english-words-and-how-they-got-their-meaning-part-two

 

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