History

  1. The United States of Diversity: Slam Poetry

    by Taneesh Khera In this column, we travel the US exploring the minority languages, dialects, and people who call it home. Then, we step back to see what effects they might have on society at large. Today, the spotlight is on slam poetry. What is slam poetry? I figured I’d go to the Starry Plough in Berkeley, California to find out. Started in 1999, they …

  2. Did One Man Write the First Great English Dictionary All by Himself?

    We’d like to take a moment to celebrate the man behind A Dictionary of the English Language, the first definitive English dictionary, the famous Samuel Johnson. A Dictionary of the English Language, also called Johnson’s Dictionary, was first published in 1775 and is viewed with reverence by modern lexicographers. Who wrote the first English dictionary? Samuel Johnson created a widely imitated style of biography and literary …

  3. The Meaning Of Labor Day

    For many of us, Labor Day means the end of summer vacation, a guilt-trip for anyone wearing white, and an excuse for department stores to have sales. But, it’s important to keep in mind the true history behind this holiday: Labor Day is a celebration of laborers, introduced at a time when labor meant something far more grueling than it generally does today. When is …

  4. 5 Important Historical Events That Changed Language

  5. We Can Thank Alexander Hamilton For These Words

    He may have been 🎶dropped in the middle of a forgotten spot in the Caribbean by providence, impoverished, in squalor🎶 … but by now we all know Alexander Hamilton grew up to be a hero and a scholar. However, did you know the first secretary of the treasury was also quite the linguist? Since Lin Manuel Miranda turned Hamilton from a mysterious face on our $10 …

  6. The Forgotten Verses of “The Star-Spangled Banner”

    Do you know all the words to “The Star-Spangled Banner”? Many people have difficulty memorizing the lyrics of the first verse of this song, which is commonly performed at sports events and other public gatherings. But did you know that there are three additional verses that we almost never hear? How Did the “Star-Spangled Banner” Become the US National Anthem? In 1814, the poet and …

  7. The United States of Diversity: Borders

    Dictionary.com’s United States of Diversity by Taneesh Khera In April, 2018 I traveled to India for a college friend’s wedding. When I came back, I read part of this essay to two friends, and we began to discuss borders and what they’ve become today. That conversation was inspiration for this episode, so grab a cushion and get comfortable for the United States of Diversity: Borders. …

  8. The United States of Diversity: Fargo And Its NCVS Don’tcha Know

    by Taneesh Khera Dictionary.com’s United States of Diversity You’ve stumbled onto our United States of Diversity series, welcome! If you don’t already know, here we explore a minority language or dialect in the country, and this episode’s no different. Does your keeat sit an the meeat? Or, maybe you wait for the boss down the black? Do you cal your mam an Sundays? If you …

  9. Take A Ride Around The World On These Unusual Transports

    One way to get to know a country is through its food. Another way is by using the country’s public transportation. Some unique modes of transportation are just for fun, like dog-sledding trips in Norway and zorbing in New Zealand (which involves rolling down a hill inside a giant inflatable ball, just saying). Other means of transportation are more practical . . . here’s a …

  10. Exploring A Runner’s High And Other Myths

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