Word Hoard

Monday, March 12, 2007


Ginger [Late Old English gingifer, gingiber conflated in Middle English with Old French gingi(m)bre, both from medieval Latin gingiber, zingeber from Latin zingiber(i from Greek ziggiberis from Pali singivera from Dravidian: cf. Tamil inci ginger, ver foot (Sanskrit srngavera infl. by srnga horn from its antler-shaped root).]

I like to think that zingeber means carrying zing. It doesn't, but I'd like to think that. Getting back to reality, I do like that we can trace ginger about as far back as any word in English.

In other news, my sister and I each pronounce crayons with one syllable: crans. The OED doesn't agree starting a second syllable with a schwa. I think it might be more of a duration of the sound that ellides the second syllable. I'm not too worried though.

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  • At March 15, 2007 6:07 PM, Blogger Michael Covarrubias said…

    So you're saying that when you say "crayons" is rhymes with bans, fans, and pans?

    I'm going to have to ask for a recording of you and your sister pronouncing these words.

  • At March 22, 2007 2:26 PM, Blogger Daniel said…

    Yes. Actually what brought it up with Marcy and me was that we were talking about the myriad "crans" that the Ocean Spray people have implemented as a prefix.


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