This week, the Oxford Etymologist answers readers questions in his latest etymology gleanings.
EBFM is rapidly becoming the default approach in global fisheries management, with the clarity of its definition and approaches for its implementation sharpening each year in US and international jurisdictions. The challenge is to objectively and quantitatively ascertain progress towards EBFM, and ensure wide-ranging applicability of the findings.
My today’s word is bonfire, which turned up in texts at the end of the fifteenth century. Seven years ago, I devoted a post to it but today I know more about this tricky compound and can write the story in a different way.
“It is a truth universally acknowledged…” that there is no such thing as too many period dramas—at least, this remains true for those of us who are drawn to them, time and time again. Watching period dramas bring with them a sense of comfort as they transport the viewer to a world that is so […]
To paraphrase, Winston Churchill, Britain has always been “with Europe but not of it”. All it ever wanted was a share in a common market. Instead, it found itself caught up in the creation of new kind of political order. The consequence was Brexit. Now Britain is neither of nor with Europe.
A look at the process of reconstructing Claudius’ Arch in Rome and how it was informed by the latest research in archaeology and classical studies to provide a better understanding of the significance of the Roman Invasion of Britain.
Why is “the all-male stage” inadequate as shorthand for the early modern stage? For one thing, it enforces a gender binary that has little to do with the subjects, desires, audiences, and practices of the time. Gender was elusive, plural, and performative, especially on the stage, where attractive androgynous boys played women, or switched back and forth between genders. The importance of female spectators, artisans, and backers gives the lie to total exclusion, and so does mounting evidence that women played in many spheres adjacent to the professional stage.
With the lifting of the remaining coronavirus restrictions across the UK, there is now no requirement for those who can work from home to continue to do so. As we have seen, however, the past two years have shown many people that they can do their jobs just as well from home, and have a better work-life balance.
Outside of humans, very few other animals have been observed engaging in spiteful behaviour, and those that have are controversial. Some of the only animals that seem to share our capacity for spite are large, intelligent parrots like cockatoos. Their acts of spite, including against humans, point to a larger set of similarities they share with humans.
What are viruses for? What use are they? These are questions that my frustrated grandson asked during the first lockdown in 2020, when he was deprived of friends, school and sports, all because of a virus.
24 March is a public holiday in Argentina, officially designated as The Day of Remembrance for Truth and Justice. The date commemorates the 1976 coup d’état that unleashed seven years of military dictatorship. The legacy of the coup continues to echo in Argentina, especially for the tens of thousands of families who lost loved ones during the military’s euphemistically-styled “national re-organization process.”
This is the second and last part of the series on the origin of the word “soul.” The perennial interest in the etymology of this word should not surprise us. It is our inability to find a convincing solution that causes astonishment and disappointment.
I didn’t enter the world of digital dance cultures as a scholar. When I was introduced to TikTok and Dubsmash in October 2018 by my high school students, I first engaged with the platforms as a dancer.
Popular culture often romanticizes Zenobia of Palmyra as a warrior queen. But the ancient evidence doesn’t support that she fought in battles. Instead, we should remember Zenobia as a skilled political tactician. She became ruler without being dominated by the men of her court.
There had been attempts to lay out streets in New York going back to its founding. It was a process that would go on for the next few centuries, and would only accelerate in the decades before and after the Great Fire of 1835.
See if this sounds familiar: misinformation, disinformation, and incomplete information are applied to an epidemic, its causes, and treatments. I am not referring to COVID-19 but to 1878 and the yellow fever epidemic that decimated a wide swath of the southern reach of the Mississippi River.