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Interesting Facts about Words


1.   There are no words in the dictionary that rhyme with: orange, purple,and month.

2.   The real name of Jesus was Yeshua. Jesus is the Greek version of the name.

3.   A "funambulist" is a tight-rope walker.

4.   Ernest Vincent Wright's novel Gadsby has 50,110 words, none of which contains the letter "E".

5.   The word encyclopaedia comes from two Greek words meaning "a circle of learning."

6.   Carol comes from the Greek word Choraulein which referred to a dance accompanied by a flute.

7.   The word Christmas comes from the English phrase, Christes Masse, literally Christ's mass.

8.   The word 'puppy' comes from the French poupee', meaning doll.

9.   When two words are combined to form a single word (motor + hotel = motel, breakfast + lunch = brunch) the new word is called a "portmanteau".

10.                     The term "hooch" for liquor comes from the Hoochinoo Indians, known for their ability to make liquor so strong it could knock someone out.

11.                     Seoul, the capital of South Korea, is a Korean word meaning "capital".

12.                     The word "tattoo" comes from the Tahitian word "tattau," which means "to mark".

13.                     The two lines that connect your top lip to the bottom of your nose are known as the philtrum.

14.                     The word "set" has more definitions than any other word in the English language.

15.                     The word "novel" originally derived from the Latin novus, meaning "new".

16.                     The word "gymnasium" comes from the Greek word gymnazein which means "to exercise naked".

17.                     The word Karate means, empty hand.

18.                     The word "lethologica" describes the state of not being able to remember the word you want.

19.                     The word salary came from the word salt in Roman times. Salt was used as a trading medium - money.

20.                     The verb "cleave" is the only English word with two synonyms which are antonyms of each other: adhere and separate.

21.                     Someone who is "pauciloquent" uses as few words as possible when speaking.

22.                     Poliosis is the graying of the hair. It comes from polios, the Greek word for "gray".

23.                     The word 'denim' comes from 'de Nimes', Nimes being the town.

24.                     The largest crossword puzzle ever published had 2631 clues across and 2922 clues down. It took up 16 sq. feet of space.

25.                     The phrase "honeymoon" came from the Greeks. It was customary for the bride's family to supply the groom with a month (or full moon cycle) of the wedding wine, which tasted like honey.

26.                     The word "Oral-B" is a combination of oral hygiene and the letter B, which stands for the word better.

27.                     Graffito is the little-used singular of the much used plural word graffiti.

28.                     Orange and black became Halloween colors because orange is associated with harvests and black is associated with death "Hallow" is an old word meaning holy, while "e'en" is Scottish for evening.

29.                     The word "alphabet" Comes from the first 2 letters of the Greek alphabet, Alpha and Beta.

30.                     Canada is an Indian word meaning 'Big Village'.

31.                     The word 'Checkmate' in chess comes from the Persian phrase 'Shah Mat,' which means 'the king is dead'.

32.                     There are only four words in the English language which end in '-dous': tremendous, horrendous, stupendous, and hazardous.

33.                     President Kennedy was the fastest random speaker in the world with upwards of 350 words per minute.

34.                     First newspaper crossword puzzle was published in a Sunday supplement to the New York World in 1913.

35.                     The word "listen" contains the same letters as the word "silent".

36.                     The only 15 letter word that can be spelled without repeating a letter is "uncopyrightable".

37.                     "Almost" is the longest word in the English language with all the letters in alphabetical order.

38.                     The word "samba" means "to rub navels together."

39.                     Did you know that the words 'lakh' and 'crore' do not exist in the English language? The two words are only used in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh and are derivatives of the Hindi words laakh and karod.

40.                     The scientific term for nose-picking is "rhinotillexonamia".

41.                     In England, in the 1880's, "Pants" was considered a dirty word!

42.                     Skepticisms is the longest word that alternates hands when typing!

43.                     Know what Mafia means? "Morte Allafrancia Italia Anela "Death to the French is Italy's cry!"

44.                     A fireplace is called a mantelpiece because, at one time, people hung their coats over the fireplace to dry them.

45.                     The "left bank" of a river is the left side as you look downstream.

46.                     The Rx sign that pharmacists use was originally the astrological sign for Jupiter.

47.                     Taresthesia is what you call it when your foot falls asleep.

48.                     The original name for the butterfly was 'flutterby'.

49.                     Women who wink at men are known as "nictitating" women.

50.                     The letters KGB stand for Komitet Gosudarstvennoy Bezopasnosti.

51.                     Hydroponics is the technique by which plants are grown in water without soil.

52.                     The permanent teeth that erupt to replace their primary predecessors (baby teeth) are called succedaneous teeth.

53.                     The raised reflective dots in the middle of highways are called Botts dots.

54.                     Sunbeams that shine down through the clouds are called crespucular rays.

55.                     A "pogonip" is a heavy winter fog containing ice crystals.

56.                     The thin line of cloud that forms behind an aircraft at high altitudes is called a contrail.

57.                     The forward slash character on your keyboard is also known as a slant, virgule or solidus.

58.                     In the Chinese written language, the ideograph for "trouble" represents two women under one roof.

59.                     A misomaniac is someone who hates everything.

60.                     The infinite sign is called a Lemniscate.

61.                     Priests in Australia advise you to say Happy Christmas, not Merry Christmas, because Merry has connotations of getting drunk.

62.                     The act of yawning and stretching is called "pandiculation".

63.                     A group of crows is called a murder.

64.                     A "clue" originally meant a ball of thread. This is why one is said to unravel the clues of a mystery.

65.                     In circus parlance, a "Joey" is a clown with at least five years of experience.

66.                     'Smithee' is a pseudonym that filmmakers use when they don't want their names to appear in the credits.

67.                     A collector who attempts to collect an example of every item in a particular field is called a 'completist'.

68.                     Mummies, are so called because of the wax (or 'mum' ) which is smeared on to the bandages for waterproofing.

69.                     The "O" when used as a prefix in Irish surnames means "descendant of".

70.                     The dot over the letter 'i' is called a title.

71.                     A 'bibliophile' is one who collects rare books.

72.                     A 'bibliopole' is a seller of rare books.

73.                     A nihilist believes in nothing.

74.                     The little bits of paper left over when holes are punched in data cards or tape are called "chad".

75.                     The name "piano" is an abbreviation of Cristofori's original name for the instrument: piano et forte, or soft and loud.

76.                     The loop on a belt that holds the loose-end is called a "keeper".

77.                     Blype is the skin that peels off after bad sunburn.

78.                     The relationship of a godparent to the real parent of a child is called 'compaternity'.

79.                     A 'nullipara' is a woman who has never given birth to a child.

80.                     "Whirly Girls" is the name of the International Association of Women Helicopter Pilots.

81.                     Obsessive nose picking is referred to as rhinotillexomania.

82.                     Switching letters is called spoonerism. For example, saying jag of Flapan, instead of flag of Japan.

83.                     The chef's tall hat is called a "toque".

84.                     A building in which silence is enforced, like a library or school room, is referred to as a "silentium".

85.                     Fiat stands for Fabbrica Italiana Automobile Torino, the name of the Italian manufacturer.

86.                     "Steatopygia" means an accumulation of fat in the buttocks.

87.                     The little bumps on the surface of a table tennis paddle are called pips.

88.                     A "quidnunc" is a person who is eager to know the latest news and gossip.

89.                     The 'v' in the name of a court case does not stand for 'versus', but for 'and' (in civil proceedings) or 'against' (in criminal proceedings).

90.                     The ZIP in Zip-code stands for Zoning Improvement Plan.

91.                     In genealogy, the female side of the family is called the distaff side the male side is the spear side.

92.                     If you are taking a class in pistology, you are not studying pistols, but rather, faith.

93.                     The science of determining characteristic traits by examining a person's shoes is scarpology.

94.                     The study of stupidity is called 'monology'.

95.                     The search for the existence of ghosts is Eidology.

96.                     The study of word origins is called etymology.

97.                     Synesthesia is a rare condition in which the senses are combined.

98.                     Synesthetes see words, taste colors and shapes and feel flavors.

99.                     Groaking is to watch people eating food hoping they'll offer you some.

100.               The name Jeep came from the abbreviation used in the army for the "General Purpose" vehicle, G.P.

101.               The little hole in the sink that lets the water drain out, instead of flowing over the side, is called a "porcelator".

102.               The 'You are here' arrow on a map is called the IDEO locator.

103.               The term Cop comes from Constable on Patrol, which is a term used in England.

104.               Colgate faced big obstacle marketing toothpaste in Spanish speaking countries. Colgate translates into the command "go hang yourself".

105.               The plastic things on the end of shoelaces are called aglets.

106.               A person who collects teddy bears is called an archtophilist.

107.               The term karaoke means "empty orchestra" in Japanese.

 

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