By Morton S. Freeman
Do you approve of censoring the works of significant writers? a few may contend that to bowdlerize an exceptional writer's paintings will be to decrease its total caliber. Others, like Thomas Bowdler, whose eraser danced over each Shakespeare play, may argue that each one modest humans will be in a position to learn an excellent paintings with out blushing. For attacking the classics, Mr. Bowdler has been immortalized because the world's best-known, self-appointed literary censor. and due to his efforts the time period bowdlerize has turn into eponymous along with his identify. on the other hand, the notice bikini--defined as a two-piece bathing swimsuit for women--has been a linguistic secret when you consider that 1947 while those fits have been first visible at the seashores of the French Riviera, a yr after the USA all started checking out atom bombs at the Bikini atoll of the Marshall Islands. a few surprised humans acknowledged that the influence of the scanty suit on male seashore loungers was once just like the devastating impact of the atomic bomb. Whoosh! an easier and extra credible suggestion is that the bold swimsuits resembled the apparel worn through ladies at the Bikini atoll.
Created a couple of century in the past, the time period eponym is itself a coinage from Greek phrases, epi, "on" or "upon," and onama, "a name." yet its broadened that means, as dictionaries set it out, refers to a observe derived from a formal identify. for example, Salisbury steak--a renowned diner menu merchandise made out of universal hamburger and dressed up with brown gravy to make it extra appealing--is named for James H. Salisbury, an English healthcare professional who promoted a nutrition of flooring pork.
A Dictionary of Eponyms explores the origins of countless numbers of those daily phrases from Argyle socks to zeppelins. Written in an wonderful and anecdotal sort, and with a foreword through Edwin Newman, the ebook encompasses a short biography of the person whose identify grew to become linked to an merchandise or thought in addition to details on how and while the identify entered the language.
If you've ever questioned simply the place phrases like cardigan sweater, pamphlet, and robot come from, Morton Freeman does greater than easily outline them--he brings them to existence.
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Additional resources for A New Dictionary of Eponyms
This large howitzer bombarded Liege and Namur in 1914, but the same name was used for the 142-ton cannon that shelled Paris in 1918 from the unbelievable distance of 76 miles, safely within the German lines. Soldiers noted the resemblance between the gun and the rotund owner of the great Krupp armament empire. The designation Big Bertha was not flattering, nor was it meant to be. It is a translation of die dicke Bertha, "the fat Bertha," the name given by the Germans to their large howitzer. Bertha Krupp (1886-1957) took over as head of the Krupp works upon the suicide of her father, Friedrich Alfred Krupp (1854-1902).
Cesare (1476-1507) and Lucrezia (1480-1519) were children of Pope Alexander VI. The English word nepotism, "favoritism shown on the basis of family relationship," can be traced directly to this misuse of official position. The Latin word nepos, "a descendant, especially a nephew," was given to the illegitimate children of popes. Pope Alexander VI in civilian life was Rodrigo Borgia, and he turned out to be a good family provider. He installed his son Cesare as an archbishop when the boy was 36 only sixteen years old.
The books had been developed at the Institution and consisted of enlarged, raised Roman letters, which was the only touch-reading technology then in existence. About half the blind children who tried to learn this method found it too difficult. Braille was a distinguished student and, in 1829, became a professor at the Institution. 31 The army at the time used a system of communication based on touch rather than sight, a primitive form of "night writing" invented by Charles Barbier, a captain of artillery in the army.
A New Dictionary of Eponyms by Morton S. Freeman