An entertaining and illuminating collection of weird, wonderful and downright baffling words from the origins of English.
Old English is the language we think we know until we actually see it. Used in England over a thousand years ago, it is rich with words that haven't changed (word), others that are unrecognisable (neorxnawang - paradise) and some that are curiously mystifying (gafol-fisc - tax-fish).
In this beautiful little book, Hana Videen has gathered these gems together to create a glorious trove and illuminate the lives, beliefs and habits of our linguistic ancestors. We discover a world where choking on a bit of bread might prove your guilt, where fiend-ship was as likely as friend-ship, and you might grow up to be a laughter-smith. These are the magical roots of our own language: you'll never see English in the same way again.
Hana Videen has been hoarding Old English words since 2013, when she began tweeting one a day. Now over 20,000 people follow for these daily gems from her wordhord. Following her Old English doctorate at King's College London, she is now a writer and blogger in Canada, translating curiosities of history into engaging narratives.
Writing & Language
Early history: c 500 to c 1450/1500