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Synopsis

For centuries English has assimilated words from other languages. Julian Walker offers a treasury of word histories, showing the variety of ways in which the words we use have evolved. The book is arranged into subjects, within which a selection of words are traced back through the stages by which they came to be part of the English language, and through more recent changes over time in form and meaning. Historical dictionaries such as Johnson's and Webster's are referenced throughout, especially where there has been disagreement over the histories and 'proper' form of words. 'Discovering Words' provides an enticing introduction to the subject of etymology, showing how the words we use hold the histories of human interaction and communication.

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