Tag Archives: Etymology

Sassenach

I must have gone for years without hearing or reading this word until the advent of the improbable television series “Outlander” in 2014 (based on Diana Gabaldon’s novels), which brought the word to the attention of (apparently) the entire English-speaking world, if not beyond. The first season of the series introduced a time-travelling twentieth-century nurse to Gaelic-speaking eighteenth-century Highland Scots, who call her a “Sassenach”. At which point, people started talking nonsense about the word on the Internet. So no change there.

More About “Anti-Agathic”

From beneath the bushy V of satanic eyebrows, Rachs’ jet eyes seemed to shower sparks at him. As usual, that immobile face was incandescent, and Toring fancied he could almost hear the creaking of a carbon-arc in the brain of his superior. The Hungarian’s incredible energies frightened, rather than soothed patrons, and for years he … Continue reading More About “Anti-Agathic”

Festivity

fɛˈstɪvɪtɪ Festivity: Rejoicing, mirth, gaiety, such as befits a feast Christmas time! That man must be a misanthrope indeed, in whose breast something like a jovial feeling is not roused—in whose mind some pleasant associations are not awakened—by the recurrence of Christmas. Charles Dickens, “Christmas Festivities”, Bell’s Life in London (1835) Dickens would have considered … Continue reading Festivity