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Something Fun

This month's fun site is http://www.etymonline.com/. A nice place to hang out for awhile. It is also useful to track down how the meanings of some words have changed over time. For example it explains that:

silly (adj.) moved from Old English meaning "happy, fortuitous, or prosperous" to blessed, then to pious, and getting to innocent by 1200. Then to harmless and then pitiable by the late 1300s. It moved on to feeble minded and foolish by 1570 and in 1886 to stunned or dazed by a blow as in "knocked silly". Then of course there was "silly putty" the trademark in 1949.

Inane originally meant empty or void in the 1660s from the Latin inanis. The sense of silly or empty-headed is from 1819. It is certainly related to Inanely which Bailey's Dictionary (1731) defines as "given to empty talk".

Generous: from the Latin: generosus meaning meaning nobility, excellence as of noble birth which is what it means when Shakespeare uses it.

Date: October 2017

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