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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.

Words
12 Onomatopoeias from Around the World
Music
How Kongar-ol Ondar Sang Two Notes at Once
Big Question
Why is “Weiner” Sometimes “Weener” and Sometimes “Whiner”?
History
90-Year-Old Headlines About Radio That Could Be About the Internet Today
Words
16 Words That Are Much Older Than They Seem
Words
9 Common Words That Come From Words for Heat
Music
Interesting Facts About 10 National Anthems
Words
What 11 Celebrities Would Be if They Had the Job Their Name Means
Big Question
How Is "I before E except after C" a Rule?
Words
Rules Shmules: 5 Phonetic Pitfalls of Shm- Reduplication
Words
Argle Bargle: 5 Meanings of Word Reduplication
Big Question
Why is Y Sometimes a Vowel?
History
The Tiny Island Where Men Have Their Own Language
Language
4 Changes to English So Subtle We Hardly Notice They're Happening
List
5 Nations that Sit Out of Alphabetical Order at the UN General Assembly
History
How Eavesdropping Was Punished in Medieval Times
List
15 Weird Sample Dialogues from Old English Textbooks
List
20 Awesomely Titled Trade Magazines
TV
4 Shows from Norway's Crazy, Successful Slow TV Experiment
Words
6 Dictionary Mysteries You Can Help Solve
List
11 Mots Merveilleux Recently Added to the French Dictionary
List
29 Answers to the Question "What is a Human Being?"
Big Question
Why Are There Two Pronunciations for 'G'?
Big Question
Is It Possible To Think Without Language?
List
16 Simple Concepts Made Simpler on Simple Wikipedia
History
Tips for Keeping your Tenement Tidy (in 1911)
List
Learn Klingon in 6 Steps
Big Question
What is the Most Complex Chinese Character?
History
11 Baby Naming Trends of the Past
History
The Klout Score of 1903: A Statistical Study of Eminent Men
Words
The Language Isaac Newton Invented
History
The Least Popular American Baby Names According to Early Records
List
15 Less-than-Inspirational Quotes from a Book of Moral Advice
Big Question
What is the Origin of the Phrase "Come Out of the Closet"?
Words
8 Symbols That We Turned Into Words
Words
11 Spam Comments That Look Like Drunk Thesauruses (And Why)
Music
Pop Song Titles are Losing the Love
List
7 Ways We Could Tell That AP Tweet was a Fake
List
The Pig Latins of 11 Other Languages
List
5 Pairs of Countries That Americans Confuse
Big Question
When and Why Did People Start Saying "Um" When They Talk?
Words
9 Extremely Pretentious Latin and Greek Plurals
Big Question
What's the Real Origin of "OK"?
List
11 Totally Redundant Place Names
List
How to Converse Properly: 18 Tips From Old Etiquette Books
Big Question
Why is English Spelling So Messed Up?
TV
21 Creative TV Edits of Naughty Movie Lines
Words
7 Fun Facts About the Dothraki Language of Game of Thrones
History
The 65 Year Battle over the Deceased Wife's Sister's Marriage Act
History
How the U.S. Army Made War with the Language of Peace
MENTAL FLOSS

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