Why Is English So Hard to Learn?: The Ingenious Poem, “The Chaos,” Documents 800 Irregularities in English Spelling and Pronunciation
In 1920, Dutch writer and traveler Gerard Nolst Trenité, also known as Charivarius, published a textbook called Drop Your Foreign ..
Napoleon’s English Lessons: How the Military Leader Studied English to Escape the Boredom of Life in Exile
When we talk about country club prison sentences, we tend to imagine a marginal amount of time spent on the inside, though the phrase sounds ..
Movie Accent Expert Analyzes 31 Actors Playing Other Famous People: Jamie Foxx as Ray Charles, Natalie Portman as Jackie Kennedy, Cate Blanchett as Bob Dylan, and More
Well-known figures’ voices are often as distinctive as their thousand-watt smiles and influential hairdos. While there is some evidence ..
The Entire Literary History of Old English Is Contained in These Four Manuscripts
Book historians and rare manuscript librarians do not have the most glamorous jobs by the usual standards. They deal with weathered, tattered, ..
Read A Classical Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue, a Hilarious & Informative Collection of Early Modern English Slang (1785)
A deep appreciation for profanity may rate high as a mark of a sophistication and authenticity. Cognitive psychologist Steven Pinker has made ..
Where Did the English Language Come From?: An Animated Introduction
If you’ve ever deliberately studied the English language — or, even worse, taught it — you know that bottomless aggravation ..
The Earliest Known Appearance of the F-Word, in a Bizarre Court Record Entry from 1310
Photo by Paul Booth You value decorum, propriety, eloquence, you treasure le mot juste and agonize over diction as you compose polite but strongly-worded ..
How Ingenious Sign Language Interpreters Are Bringing Music to Life for the Deaf: Visualizing the Sound of Rhythm, Harmony & Melody
They are greeted like celebrities, with huge cheers and applause from the audience on Jimmy Kimmel Live!, for example, and it is well-deserved—they’re ..
Meet the “Grammar Vigilante,” Hell-Bent on Fixing Grammatical Mistakes on England’s Storefront Signs
In the age of Banksy, anonymity, energy, and acting without permission combine to make a potent brew. Those whose work springs up in a public ..