Wednesday, July 06, 2011

The History of English in 10 minutes

here, via Abraham Piper.

Interestingly, the King James Version (chapter 4) precedes the age of science (chapter 5).  Back then, it was about seeking Truth, not anything like today's "social science".*

Altogether, a lot more fun than the usual historical rigmarole.**

*Here's a topic to discuss amongst yourselves:  "social science" is neither social nor a science.

**1736, "a long, rambling discourse," from an altered, Kentish colloquial survival of ragman roll "long list or catalogue" (1520s), in M.E. a long roll of verses descriptive of personal characters, used in a medieval game of chance called Rageman, perhaps from Anglo-Fr. Ragemon le bon "Ragemon the good," which was the heading on one set of the verses, referring to a character by that name. Sense transferred to "foolish activity or commotion" c.1955, but known orally from 1930s.

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