Which Joe gave his name to ‘sloppy joes’? We look at five interesting sandwiches and their lexical origins.
1A word that is formed from an existing word which looks as though it is a derivative, typically by removal of a suffix (e.g. edit from editor).
- ‘Since this use of 'ginger' is considered obsolete by the OED, these instances suggest a re-invention via back-formation rather than a survival of the old word.’
- ‘It was evidently a back-formation of gullibility, which in turn was an alteration of cullibility, ultimately from cull, meaning ‘a dupe’.’
- ‘It was re-introduced in 1896 by Max Beerbohm as a deliberate and humorous back-formation from uncouth but has never really become established again in mainstream English.’
- ‘The name ‘Troynovant’ is a back-formation from ‘Trinovantes’, the name of the powerful British tribe that lived north and east of London.’
- ‘The verb ‘to wrong’ is more common than the noun, and indeed the noun probably gets its enclitic meaning by back-formation from the verb.’
- 1.1[mass noun] The linguistic process by which back-formations develop.
- ‘Rather, he says, ‘semi-auto’ is short for ‘semi-auto-loader,’ a translation from the German, and ‘semi-auto’ was lengthened by back-formation to ‘semi-automatic.’’
- ‘By a curious process of back-formation, a number of brand names, products and logos - Aeroplane jelly, Arnott's biscuits, Holden cars, Vegemite, the Qantas kangaroo - became national symbols in their own right.’
We take a look at several popular, though confusing, punctuation marks.
From Afghanistan to Zimbabwe, discover surprising and intriguing language facts from around the globe.
The definitions of ‘buddy’ and ‘bro’ in the OED have recently been revised. We explore their history and increase in popularity.