Which Joe gave his name to ‘sloppy joes’? We look at five interesting sandwiches and their lexical origins.
A widely distributed herbaceous plant with purplish-brown two-lobed flowers. It was formerly considered to be effective in the treatment of scrofula.
- ‘Among the wildflowers are a red columbine, aster, figwort, wild sarsaparilla, fleabane, and avens.’
- ‘In the course of our short walk, Barry reckons he's counted no fewer than 16 species of the ‘prettier’ wildflowers, including cranesbill, herb robert, various clovers, ribwort plantain, figwort and dog rose.’
- ‘In seeking to solve this new problem, we note first that the form crowdy-kit itself not only means ‘small fiddle,’ but also refers to a plant, not any kind of orchid, but Scrophularia aquatica, the water figwort.’
- ‘Among the vegetation in the northern sector of the marsh lie tall herbs including meadow-sweet, wild angelica and figwort, while strands of yellow iris, greater tussock sedge and alder carr can also be seen.’
- ‘Of the few wildflowers, figwort and everlasting appear to be the most common.’
Mid 16th century: from obsolete fig ‘piles’ + wort. The word originally denoted the pilewort or lesser celandine, which was used as a treatment for piles; the current sense dates from the late 16th century.
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.