Amazon

If you’re reading this shortly after publication, then I don’t need to tell you about the horrific tragedy of the fires deliberately set in the Amazon Rainforest.

Focusing just on the name Amazon, I’ve often briefly wondered why the name was shared by the South American river and rainforest, as well the Ancient Greek all-female warrior tribe. Continue reading

Quite a Predicament

I saw the word predicament recently, and thought that it would be an interesting case for a little bit of etymology figuring-out. It looks so Latin, with such clearly separate sections, each of which could have its own meaning, and which could all be added up to clearly show the meaning of the word as whole. Continue reading

Do Re Mi Fa Sol La Ti Do

Do Ti La Sol Fa Mi Re Do!

Beautifully done! (and yes, it is Sol, not So!)

Even if you haven’t seen The Sound of Music, you’re probably quite familiar with this little method of assigning syllables to the seven major musical notes.

It’s known as solfège, and is used to help a musician distinguish between different pitches of notes. It’s not something I’d ever given much thought about until one day, likely while I was living in Belgium, I saw The Sound of Music dubbed into FrenchContinue reading

Si Vis Pacem, Para Bellum

If you want peace, prepare for war.

An ancient, but enduring adage, first found in the 5th century De re militari (Concerning Military Matters) by the Latin writer Publius Flavius Vegetius Renatus.

I was thinking about this phrase recently, inspired by the subtitle of the latest John Wick filmParabellum. Continue reading

Night Then!

Oh, hi there!

I’ve been taking a bit of a break, to recharge my batteries. But I’m nicely refreshed now!

The other day, I saw a tweet which pointed out the resemblances between the words for night and eight in various European languages. They’re obviously only one letter apart in English, and there’s a similar… similarity between the words in other languages: Continue reading