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Tag Archives: “The Compact Edition of the Oxford English Dictionary”

ETYMOLOGY: CAITIFF, VARLET PART 1

CAITIFFS! VARLETS! WHAT rare but appropriate words describing too many politicians these days. Merriam-Webster lists “caitiff” as an adjective meaning “cowardly, despicable.” It defines the noun ”varlet” as “attendant, menial; … Continue reading

July 14, 2019 · Leave a comment

ETYMOLOGY: PEEVISH, PETULANT

“PETULANT” WAS the first word that came to mind when I heard Trump’s threat to dump immigrants into U.S.sanctuary cities. But then etymology furthered my enlightenment. According to Merriam-Webster, the … Continue reading

April 16, 2019 · 3 Comments

WELCOMING NEW (AND OLD) WORDS TO THE OED

I MUST confess that our family Compact Edition of the Oxford English Dictionary, 1971, is appearing smaller and smaller each month. The OED’s official website has cited “New Words in … Continue reading

March 22, 2019 · Leave a comment

STYLISH WRITING PART 2

YESTERDAY IN PART 1, several sources were cited as references here at SimanaitisSays: Merriam-Webster, Karen Elizabeth Gordon’s The Deluxe Transitive Vampire: The Ultimate Handbook of Grammar for the Innocent, the … Continue reading

February 21, 2019 · 1 Comment

ETYMOLOGY: SCOUNDREL

TO QUOTE Trumpery of January 14, 2019, the president said that FBI personnel were “known scoundrels.” Were I a second-grader, I might respond, “It takes one to know one.” Given … Continue reading

January 17, 2019 · Leave a comment

ETYMOLOGY: TO COZEN, A COZENER

GIVEN THAT we may be entering the second half, and perhaps the end game, of Trumpery, it is not inappropriate to discuss classical terms for the personality type, in particular, … Continue reading

January 8, 2019 · 2 Comments

COMPLICITY AND COLLUSION—DUAL ETYMOLOGIES

MUCH IN the news these days, the words “complicity” and “collusion” warrant inclusion in my series of Etymology for our Times. It’s most appropriate to compare and contrast these two … Continue reading

December 5, 2018 · 3 Comments