Ancient word of the day: Thalassophile

A thalassophile is a lover of the sea or someone who is powerfully drawn to and by the ocean. This ancient word comes from the Ancient Greek θάλασσα (thálassa, “sea”), and φίλος (phílos, “dear, beloved”). I took this photo on Enoshima Island in Kanagawa prefecture, Japan back in early October 2018. As the sun set,Continue reading “Ancient word of the day: Thalassophile”

Ancient Word of the Day: Whelm

Whelm originates from Old English and it means to overturn or capsize a hollow vessel (a boat, a heart); to bury by wave, flood, storm, avalanche. The etymology is from the Old English hwelfan, to ‘upheave’. This explains the modern use of “overwhelmed” and “underwhelmed”. No voice divine the storm allay’d, No light propitious shone;Continue reading “Ancient Word of the Day: Whelm”

Ancient Word of the Day: Brumation

A word coined in 1965 by American Zoologist Wilbur W. Mayhew. Brumation denotes a state of torpor and sluggishness brought on by winter. Mayhew used the word to describe the cold-weather dormancy of reptiles. Brumation is also a term commonly used in Biology to describe the dormant period for reptiles. As with hibernation in mammals,Continue reading “Ancient Word of the Day: Brumation”

Ancient Word of the Day: Weltschmerz

Weltschmerz: n: (literally) World Pain (from German). The feeling of sadness at the suffering that surrounds you in the world. The pain of being an empath and sensitive to all despair and distress in the world. An ill-defined weariness at the burdens carried universally by all of humankind. “Sickness brought me this Thought, in thatContinue reading “Ancient Word of the Day: Weltschmerz”

Ancient word of the day: Cirrocumulus

Origin: 1650s. Cumulus ” a heap, pile, mass, surplus ” in Latin *keue “to swell” in Latin. Cirrocumulus are flocks of fleecy clouds that whisk past us on a glorious spring day. Often their appearance in the evening foretells of a stormy morning the following day. At least thats old shepherd’s wisdom. German Schäfchenwolken: LittleContinue reading “Ancient word of the day: Cirrocumulus”

Ancient Word of the Day: Crudelis

Crudelis: Latin To delight in blood and gore. Over time this word came to mean being vicious and cruel The word Crudelis comes from an even older word in Proto-Indo-European, simply Kru which means blood, gore and viscera. Kru words show up in the English language a lot in association with bloody and awful deaths.Continue reading “Ancient Word of the Day: Crudelis”

A history of the world’s languages as a gnarly willow tree

The world’s mother tongues have blended and intermingled since humans first stood upright and emerged out of the primeval forests. Here’s a really awesome family tree beautifully illustrated by Minna Sundberg. Minna is an immensely talented illustrator who has been creating a wonderful tales set in northern Europe for her online web comic Stand Still,Continue reading “A history of the world’s languages as a gnarly willow tree”

Ancient Word of the Day: Khemeia

Khemeia: The extraction of juices for medicine, from Ancient Greek Related to the word Khumos meaning plant juice. This word khemeia travelled from Greece to the Medieval Arabic world where it came to mean al-khemeia or alchemy. The goal of alchemists was to bring a mystical fifth element known as the ‘quintessence’ from the divineContinue reading “Ancient Word of the Day: Khemeia”