History That Never Was

Home of Dawn Vogel: Writer, Historian, Geek

Fun for Friday: Band Name Origins

| November 2, 2018

If you’ve ever wondered how famous bands got their name, look no further! Wikipedia has you covered with this list of band name etymologies! It’s interesting to see the prevalence of names that come from dreams and also from Tolkien. Take a look through and see if your favorites are mentioned!

Fun for Friday: Interesting Facts about English

| June 15, 2018

Grammarly has a neat little article including ten interesting facts about the English language, which you can read here. In it, you can learn all about pangrams, ambigrams, and ghost words! The most fascinating fact to me is the last one, which states that the word “girl” did not originally mean a female child, but […]

Fun for Friday: More Interesting Etymologies

| February 9, 2018

I’m always interested in linguistics and etymologies. Here’s an article from a few years back where the Oxford Royale Academy has named 14 words with the most fascinating word origins in the English language.

Fun for Friday: The Etymology of February

| February 2, 2018

Did you know that originally, February didn’t even exist as a month? And that the Roman god Februus is named after a Roman festival from which the month takes its name, not the other way around? If you’re interested in word origins, check out this article about the origins of the name of the second […]

Fun for Friday: Winter Word Etymology

| December 8, 2017

Ever wonder where the English words for our seasons come from? Winter is, apparently, an old Germanic word that spread into other languages, but there are still some questions as to its roots. You can learn more about this at Oxford University Press’s blog. And if you’re interested in finding out about the other seasons, […]

Fun for Friday: Weird Word Origins, Thanksgiving Edition

| November 17, 2017

Just in time to impress your friends and family members around the Thanksgiving table, here is a list of the origins of ten common Thanksgiving words. In addition it talks a little bit about what goes into some of the foods we consume at Thanksgiving, including why marshmallows really aren’t marshmallows any more! So whether […]

Fun for Friday: Mystery Words!

| November 3, 2017

More fun for us word nerds! This article compiles a list of fifteen common English words for which the etymology cannot be determined. What’s mind boggling to me is that several of the words on the list go together well, meaning there are whole phrases that are commonly used that people don’t know the etymology […]

Fun for Friday: Spooky Etymologies

| October 20, 2017

English words come from all sorts of interesting places, but here’s a list of words with “spooky” etymologies. While some of these words may have spookier origins than others, it’s interesting to see the way words have shifted from their original roots to their modern meanings. I was particularly interested in the origins of “cobalt,” […]