Oxford University Press's
Academic Insights for the Thinking World

  • Language /
  • Dictionaries & Lexicography

W – Podictionary Word of the Day

It seems strange that in English we call W ‘double-U’ while in French its ‘double-V’. It’s usually written to resemble two Vs, rather than two Us. At Urbandictionary, the entry for W contains plenty of slurs against George Bush, and those who decided to have 3-Ws as the start of a web address.

Read More

Ammon’s Favorite Words, This Week

Several months ago, John McGrath of Wordie interviewed me for this blog. He asked me about my favorite words that I had come across in reading the OED and I gave him a list of what they were at the time. But words can be capricious things, and the ones of which I am fondest are constantly changing.

Read More

Magnet – Podictionary Word of the Day

The OED refers to two men; Pliny and Nicander—in its etymology for the word magnet. Pliny was a Roman who lived in the 1st century and wrote the ‘Natural History’. Nicander was a Greek, who lived 300 years earlier. It’s very useful in figuring out how past peoples thought of the world around them.

Read More