World’s Strangest

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Illustrated Etymology

1844, from berserk (n.) "Norse warrior," by 1835, an alternative form of berserker (1822), a word which was introduced by Sir Walter Scott, from O.N. berserkr (n.) "raging warrior of superhuman strength;" [...]

Dietribes: Oatmeal

• Though Samuel Johnson wrote in his Dictionary of the English Language that oats were ”a grain which in England is generally given to horses, but in Scotland supports the people,” to which Lord Elibank (so wrote Sir Walter Scott) replied, “Very true, and where will you find such men and such horses?”’ • Oats contain the highest [...]

The Origins of 10 Food Phrases

If you like a little food etymology with your Sunday brunch, this list is for you.  1. Apple of my eye Way back when, people believed that the eye’s pupil was a solid object and referred to it as an apple. Shakespeare used the phrase in this sense in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, saying “Flower of this [...]