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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.

11 Naughty-Sounding Scientific Names (and What They Really Mean)
4 Crazy, Early Foreign Language Versions of Beatles Songs
How Do You Pronounce "Sochi"?
The Evolution of Facebook's Pronoun Problem
Deaf People Invented the Football Huddle…and Then Stopped Using It
Why Does Q (Almost) Always Go With a U?
Hear "Let It Go" From Disney's Frozen Sung in 25 Languages
3 Motown Greats Who Recorded German Versions of Their Hits
Prii? LEGO? 11 Brand Names With Plural Problems
17 Slogans on Town Welcome Signs You Won't See Anywhere Else
11 Inscriptions on Old Buildings That Tell It Like It Is
13 Words of the Year from Other Countries
How to Quit Your Job in Klingon … The Right Way
The American Dialect Society’s Word of the Year is “Because”
9 Reasons This Little Girl’s Sign Language Version of “'Twas the Night Before Christmas” is Great
Find Your Birthday Word at Oxford Dictionaries
'Tis and 10 Other Fun Proclitic Words
Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Year: “Science”
Here's How Crazy-Long German Words are Made
Why is This The Last Time Hanukkah and Thanksgiving Will Occur on The Same Day?
Watch the Surf Punks Explain the Latest Slang in this '80s News Report
15 Words Etymologically Inspired by Animals
26 of Noah Webster’s Spelling Changes That Didn’t Catch On
The Word of the Year Is Selfie
Car-a-mel or Car-mel? 3 Reasons for Syllabically Ambiguous Words
11 Teeny Units of Measurement for Tiny Things
What's the Origin of the Word "Dude"?
8 Things I’ve Learned from Being Corrected by mental_floss Readers
Now You Can Rickroll Your Friends (or Enemies) in Klingon
12 Things Made Collectible Thanks to Spelling Errors
The First Words of 11 Famous People
Fun with The Great Language Game
What Your Facebook Updates Say About Your Age
How Many Spaces Should There Be at the End of a Sentence?
17 Words that Describe Themselves
Top 10 Viral Hits of the Pre-Civil War Years
Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell: The End of a Policy, the Beginning of an Idiom
Watch Australians Explain How to Do an Australian Accent
15 International Banknotes That Show Queen Elizabeth’s Aging Process
How Does an Exception Prove a Rule?
11 Nouns That Only Have a Plural Form
11 Common Words With Very Specific Meanings on Food Labels
12 Os Made Complex by 17th Century Calligraphy
16 OED Words That Became Obscure (Including Bransle, the Twerk of 1662)
22 Songs that Write Themselves from The Songwriter’s Rhyming Dictionary
14 Swedish Words That Conflict With the Ikea Products They Name
35 Classy Slang Terms for Naughty Bits from the Past 600 Years
14 Language Facts from the U.S. Census Bureau
3 Facts About English’s Most Adorable Suffix, -ling
6 Creative Uses of Sentence Diagramming
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