Arika Okrent

Writes about: language

Linguist, author of In the Land of Invented Languages, living in Chicago, doing her part to fight off the cot-caught merger and keep "gym shoes" alive.

Lookups of 'Ombre' Spiked During Debate After "Bad Hombres" Comment
6 Punctuation Marks Hated by Famous Authors
Monumental Scholarly Dictionary of Slang Is Now Online
Recharting Old Territory: Explore This New Interactive Exhibit of a 1507 World Map
Dumbbells, Barbells, Kettlebells—Why Do We Call Weights "Bells"?
Semi-, Hemi-, Demi-: What’s the Difference?
5 Surprising Facts About Swearing
Lookups of 'Lepo' Spiked During Debate Discussion of Aleppo
Watch These Sisters Create Awesome Spontaneous Pop Songs in ASL
7 Delightful Dickensian Words
The Origin of the Word 'Slang' Has Been Found
16 Expletives We Should Definitely Bring Back
Is There Such a Thing as Not Having an Accent?
Watch a Song from 'Hamilton' Performed in ASL
26 Fancy, Unusual Plurals That Work Like “Attorneys General”
Brits and Americans Have Totally Different Ideas of What ‘Frown’ Means
9 Splendiferous Words from the Oxford Roald Dahl Dictionary
20 Towns Named for Other Towns But Pronounced Differently
4 More Unofficial Rules Native English Speakers Don't Realize They Know
How A Word Gets Into the Dictionary
5 Annoying Latin Errors from an Ancient List That Predicted Latin's Descendants
The Fingerspelled Alphabet in 10 Different Sign Languages
Athletes Are Finally Getting Accent Marks On Their Jerseys
18 Academic Papers About '90s TV Shows
How to Tell Whether You've Got Angst, Ennui, or Weltschmerz
27 Hilariously Nasty Sounding Mushroom Species Names
Take an ASL Tour of the West Wing with the Deaf Receptionist Who Works There
In Search of That Authentic Philly Accent
What Does "The" Mean?
11 Fun Facts About the International Phonetic Alphabet
The Peppy '80s Song "Vamos a la Playa" Was About Nuclear War
Denmark and Sweden Go To War (On Twitter)
Learn Cree For 'Wi-Fi' And 'Tim Horton's' With New Book
15 Adorably Wunderbar German Terms of Endearment
Your Favorite Backstreet Boys Song Is Even Better In Chinese
Are You a Fan or a Freak? 8 Terms for Enjoying Something (And the Subtle Differences Between Them)
A Musical Guide to Tricky British Proper Names
Follow Along with a Conversation in Doric Scots
23 Hipster Baby Name Ideas From The Dictionary of Medieval Names
Norway Readathon of Terms of Use for Apps Lasts 32 Hours
Raising a DeafBlind Baby
Is it Anxiety-Ridden or -Riddled?
12 Splendid Portraits of Immigrants Arriving at Ellis Island
The Biggest Changes on the New SSA Baby Name List
Animation of Emigration to the U.S. Since 1820
42 of the Best Least Popular Baby Names From 100 Years Ago
The ABC of Architects
The 9 Best Parts of a Legal Brief on Behalf of Klingon Speakers
7 Words That Have Changed Stages in the New Edition of 'Modern English Usage'
Map of the Word for ‘Plastic Bag’ in the Dialects of France


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