Stereotype – meaning ‘Stiff markings’

Stereotype; recently I got struck by how the word means to apply a simlified image of a people with a given characteristic to all people but how ‘stereo’, in audio seems to mean multiple – as in stereo sound opposed to mono. It seemed to me that it ought really to be monotype, so I…

Maroon – The chestnuts or the slaves?

Maroon is a homophone (a word with two different meanings), one being the reddish-brown colour, the other being to leave someone on an island. I love these little language quirks and whenever I come across them I can’t help but wonder if the two words have evolved separately or if they both come from the…

Devil: From Latin ‘Diaballein’ meaning ‘to throw accross’

Devil: Comes from the old English word ‘deofel’ meaning ‘evil spirit’, which in turn is from late Latin ‘diabolus’ which had evolved from a word from earlier Latin ‘diablos’, which meant ‘slanderer or accuser’ and itself came from ‘diaballein’ meaning to ‘slander’ or ‘attack. ‘Diaballein’ is made up of two latin words’ Dia’ maning ‘across’…

Pleb: From the Latin ‘Plebes’ meaning the masses

Pleb: is a shortening of plebian, it is considered a colloquialism and first appeared in 1856, prior to that ‘plebian’ was used. The word is often falsely attributed to the Romans, but the first record is found in the 1560’s – more than 100 years after the Roman empire. It was used as a way…