How Did These Fruits Get Their Names in English?

How Kiwifruits Got Their Name Kiwifruit were first found in the Chang Kiang Valley of China and as they spread to other parts of the world, they were called Chinese gooseberries. They were named ‘kiwifruit’ in the mid twentieth century. The new name refers to the furry covering that resembles the kiwi bird. Kiwifruits in… Read More

Punny Business Names Intended

The pun, also called paronomasia, is a form of word play which suggests two or more meanings, by exploiting multiple meanings of words, or of similar-sounding words, for an intended humorous or rhetorical effect.These ambiguities can arise from the intentional use and abuse of homophonic, homographic, metonymic, or metaphorical language. For more on puns, click here. Here… Read More

Confusing words: Thank or Thanks God it’s Friday?

“Thank God” is actually a shortened version of “Thanks be to God” which means that you are telling the others (your friends or whoever) that you are thankful to God. “Thank God” is in the same way as “Praise God”. “Thank God” is also correct because you are using “Thank” as a verb I (we)… Read More

Confusing words: into, in to, onto, on to, unto

          “On to” is similar to “in to”: “on” is an adverb and “to” is a preposition. It often appears in idiomatic and casual expressions:   Lastly, “unto” is an old, now rarely used, preposition that can basically be replaced by “to” or “until.” One of the most famous sentences that uses unto is what is commonly known… Read More

Woof Woof: Dog Barks in Different Languages

Woof is the conventional representation in the English language of the barking of a dog. As with other examples of onomatopoeia or imitative sounds, other cultures “hear” the dog’s barks differently and represent them in their own ways. Some of the equivalents of “woof” in other European and Asian languages are as follows: English –… Read More

Confusing words: mugwump

Origin: The Mugwumps were Republican political activists who bolted from the United States Republican Party by supporting Democratic candidate Grover Cleveland in the United States presidential election of 1884. Theyswitched parties because they rejected the financial corruption associated with Republican candidate James G. Blaine. In a close election, the Mugwumps supposedly made the difference in… Read More

Politically correct English

As we progress in the 21st century, more and more everyday English terms are considered offensive. Although there are many categories in which words have been changed such as racial and ethnic groups, age, ilness and disabilities, and sexual preferences, among others, it is in gender that these changes are more noticeable: Gender is an… Read More