M.Leddy + words   582

New AHD entries
Burner, saltimbocca, GOAT: among the additions this year to the American Heritage Dictionary.
dictionary  words 
5 days ago by M.Leddy
Word of the day: wrangler
At many a performance of The Nutcracker, the volunteering parents who manage the young dancers backstage.
words 
5 days ago by M.Leddy
Word of the day: sledgehammer
Walking through the hardware store, I wondered: why sledgehammer? Does it have something to do with sledding? A mighty hammer used to free a sled stuck in ice? No.
words 
5 days ago by M.Leddy
Dry goods, &c.
What are dry goods anyway?
dowdyworld  words 
4 weeks ago by M.Leddy
More blizzardous
I went looking for John Ashbery’s word “blizzardous” in Google Books and found an 1888 column by one J. Ashby-Sterry.
JohnAshbery  words 
8 weeks ago by M.Leddy
Kafkaesque
Trending at Merriam-Webster.
Kafka  words 
8 weeks ago by M.Leddy
Misused word of the day: refute
Pay attention to the news for a while, and you’ll notice the word misused.
BryanGarner  words 
12 weeks ago by M.Leddy
Recently updated
Stornography, now appearing in a cartoon.
television  weather  words 
12 weeks ago by M.Leddy
Stornography
The commodification of horrific weather into televised spectacle.
television  weather  words 
12 weeks ago by M.Leddy
Lash tab
Elaine and I were getting coffee in the library when I wondered about the patch on her backpack.
words 
september 2017 by M.Leddy
Words, can’t stand ’em
Fresca at l’astronave has written a post about words she can’t stand.
words 
august 2017 by M.Leddy
Word of the day: zaatar
“In Middle Eastern cuisine: a condiment made from any of these herbs (esp. thyme) singly or in combination, with dried sumac, toasted sesame seeds and salt.”
food  words 
august 2017 by M.Leddy
“Zillions”
A fine episode of Helen Zaltzman’s podcast The Allusionist, about hyperbolic indefinite numerals.
numbers  words 
august 2017 by M.Leddy
A good skate
I had to look it up.
idiom  words 
august 2017 by M.Leddy
Some prepositions
“Can we move on off of that?”
words 
july 2017 by M.Leddy
Word of the night: owl-hoot
The earliest meaning, now archaic and rare: “dusk, nightfall.”
OED  words 
june 2017 by M.Leddy
Workplace expression of the day
Hard stick : used in the world of medicine.
words 
june 2017 by M.Leddy
On hope
Imagine a chair or dean, after a meeting has ended, asking for a private word with a faculty member who suspects plagiarism in the work of some favored student: “I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Biff go. He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go.”
politics  words 
june 2017 by M.Leddy
Zippy bangles
“Stretchable diamond bangles.”
comics  words  Zippy 
june 2017 by M.Leddy
Iambic beer?
For the splittest of seconds, I misread a word in the definition for “Kriek,” the Oxford English Dictionary Word of the Day.
misreading  OED  poetry  words 
may 2017 by M.Leddy
A real nut job
I found this defenseless creature online and combed its tail forward.
art  politics  words 
may 2017 by M.Leddy
Word of the day: nut job
Perhaps nut job will be the 2017 word of the year.
politics  words 
may 2017 by M.Leddy
Word of the day: nixie
“Post which cannot be forwarded by the postal services because it is illegibly or incorrectly addressed.”
mail  OED  words 
may 2017 by M.Leddy
Orient and orientate
Choosing “orientate” on either side of the Atlantic might mark a speaker or writer as something of an outlier.
usage  words 
may 2017 by M.Leddy
Nomenclature
I am a sous-farmer.
words 
may 2017 by M.Leddy
If ever there was a need for misinflammation . . .
Anthony J. Blinken’s opinion piece in today’s New York Times cries out for use of the timely word misinflammation, coined in these pages last year.
culture  politics  truth  words 
april 2017 by M.Leddy
Houses, homes, legs, limbs
From Willa Cather’s My Ántonia (1918).
WillaCather  words 
april 2017 by M.Leddy
Review: Word by Word
Kory Stamper’s Word by Word does for lexicography what Mary Norris’s Between You & Me does for copyediting: it makes visible the work, the worker, and the workplace.
dictionary  grammar  usage  words 
april 2017 by M.Leddy
“Hungh?”
An odd question in Mark Trail.
comics  MarkTrail  OED  words  ZoraNealeHurston 
april 2017 by M.Leddy
Word of the day: heirloom
Long story short: an heirloom isn’t a weaving machine, nor is it something looming in the distance. Nor is it related to Erroll Garner, though the rights to “Misty” would be quite a heirloom.
dictionary  OED  words 
march 2017 by M.Leddy
Cosmetic, cosmos
I wondered last night in a conversation with friends: could cosmetic and cosmos be related? Yes, they could be, and are.
OED  words 
march 2017 by M.Leddy
Word of the day: enrichen
“EZ-Straw helps enrichen soil for . . . GREAT RESULTS!”
words 
march 2017 by M.Leddy
Word of the day: counterpane
Why it means “bedspread.”
words 
march 2017 by M.Leddy
“An enemy of the people”
Long story short: the French Revolution, an Ibsen play, Lenin, Stalin, and sometimes Mao.
history  politics  words 
march 2017 by M.Leddy
Dictionaries rising
From the Fashion and Style pages of The New York Times, a report on increased interest in dictionaries.
dictionary  politics  truth  words 
february 2017 by M.Leddy
“Alternate” and “alternative” “facts”
Mary Norris on “alternate” and “alternative.”
politics  usage  words 
january 2017 by M.Leddy
E. B. White on America Firsters
Fascism, nationalism, and America Firsters.
culture  EBWhite  history  politics  words 
january 2017 by M.Leddy
Word of the day: tyrant
Our president-elect appears to possess the traits of both Platonic and theatrical tyrants.
Greek  culture  politics  Sophocles  words 
january 2017 by M.Leddy
Words for these times
From the American Heritage Dictionary, words for these times: “Minions, sycophants, toadies, and other creatures.”
culture  dictionary  politics  words 
january 2017 by M.Leddy
Words as money
Harry R. Warfel: “Just as the fiscal operations of a nation are intricate and infinitely complicated and yet seemingly simple to the child that exchanges a nickel for a candy bar, so the transfer of a few words — like ‘I love you’ — produces a simple yet immense effect.”
money  words 
january 2017 by M.Leddy
Man, oh man
Dated language in a New York Times book review.
culture  NewYorkTimes  words 
january 2017 by M.Leddy
Crafted
The vitamin and mineral supplement Airborne is “crafted.” In fact (or in adspeak), it’s “specially crafted.”
advertising  words 
january 2017 by M.Leddy
Yoda, n.
“Yoda” is a new addition to the Oxford English Dictionary.
dictionary  names  OED  words 
january 2017 by M.Leddy
Merriam-Webster v. fascism
Merriam-Webster is encouraging readers to look up something other than “fascism.”
culture  dictionary  politics  words 
december 2016 by M.Leddy
A Word of the Year
“After much discussion, debate, and research, the Oxford Dictionaries Word of the Year 2016 is post-truth.”
dictionary  politics  truth  words 
november 2016 by M.Leddy
Hot mess
Emily Brewster of Merriam-Webster explains.
dictionary  words 
november 2016 by M.Leddy
Word of the day: sympathist
I know what prompted me to choose the word sympathist to describe my regard for the Chicago Cubs.
words 
november 2016 by M.Leddy
Baseball and silence
I know very little about baseball, but it seems to me that the game invites contemplation — watching and waiting and thinking. Joe Buck and company, but especially Buck, sucked all the silence out of the game.
baseball  television  words 
november 2016 by M.Leddy
Usage tip of the day
From Leddy’s Imaginary Dictionary of Usage (2016).
usage  words 
october 2016 by M.Leddy
Usage tip of the day
The entry for “nice”: from Leddy’s Imaginary Dictionary of Usage (2016).
usage  words 
october 2016 by M.Leddy
Words, words, words
Build Your Vocabulary (Coronet Instructional Films, 1948).
film  words 
october 2016 by M.Leddy
FOHN
A crossword word. I know it because it makes a memorable appearance in John Ashbery and James Schuyler’s novel A Nest of Ninnies (1969).
JohnAshbery  crossword  JamesSchuyler  words 
september 2016 by M.Leddy
Word of the day: eclogue
Shepherds in eclogues don’t clear much brush. They talk and sing — much more fun.
life  words 
september 2016 by M.Leddy
Word of the Day: loll
Had I known about today’s word earlier in the day, I perhaps wouldn’t have been as willing to spend much of the day clearing brush from the edge of our property (with Elaine).
life  words 
september 2016 by M.Leddy
Dr. Watson’s prose, however
The stuffiness of “however” suits him.
BryanGarner  film  usage  words 
september 2016 by M.Leddy
Word of the day: spatula
I will never look at a thin flexible dull-edged usu. metal implement in the same way.
words 
september 2016 by M.Leddy
Something phishy
About e-mail, expletive infixation, and my deep and unerasable misgivings about voting for Hillary Clinton.
e-mail  politics  words 
september 2016 by M.Leddy
Word of the day: any road
“The next song we’d like to sing is our latest record, or our latest electronic noise, depending on whose side you’re on. Any road, we’d like to carry on with it.”
Beatles  words 
august 2016 by M.Leddy
Word of the day: wayzgoose
“August 24” means something.
print  words 
august 2016 by M.Leddy
Nancy snag
A Nancy-verse snag.
comics  Nancy  words 
august 2016 by M.Leddy
Word of the day: snag
Go out walking in nature preserve. Spot new specimen: snag . The Oxford English Dictionary explains.
nature  words 
august 2016 by M.Leddy
WSJ vulgarity
The Wall Street Journal now allows the printing of vulgarities. The New York Times should follow suit.
newspapers  words 
august 2016 by M.Leddy
A PBS qua
Heard this evening on the PBS NewsHour , a reference to David Petraeus sharing classified information with “his mistress qua biographer.”
words 
july 2016 by M.Leddy
Word of the day: tarmac
The word is in the air. But where does it come from?
words 
july 2016 by M.Leddy
Recently updated
Now there’s misinflammation.
words 
june 2016 by M.Leddy
Imaginary word of the day: misinflame
The word came to me in a dream last night, as part of a headline I cannot remember
dreams  words 
june 2016 by M.Leddy
The passing show
Coined by Alexander Pope.
poetry  words 
june 2016 by M.Leddy
If and whether
From Sir Ernest Gowers.
usage  words 
june 2016 by M.Leddy
The New Yorker that and which
Mary Norris’s explanation of The New Yorker approach to that and which is likely, I think, to leave many viewers confused.
NewYorker  usage  words 
june 2016 by M.Leddy
An endless, roiling sea
Roil, in all forms, a vogue word.
words 
june 2016 by M.Leddy
Alecry
“The rehearsal in imagination or memory of the events of a graduation ceremony.”
dreams  words 
june 2016 by M.Leddy
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