11
votes
1answer
333 views

Come on, don’t be such a nimrod!

According to the OED, the word English Nimrod is derived from the Hebrew, where in Genesis 10:8–9 he is described as ‘a mighty one in the earth’ and ‘a mighty hunter before the Lord’. It is ...
6
votes
3answers
560 views

Words based on the names of gods [closed]

While the word christen means "to baptise" or "to make Christian", in another sense, it has shed its religious connotations to simply mean "to name" or even "use for the first time". Is there any ...
-3
votes
1answer
493 views

What is the origin of the nickname “Money Making Manhattan”? [closed]

What is the origin of the nickname "Money Making Manhattan" for the borough of Manhattan in New York City?
5
votes
1answer
47k views

What does “instagram” mean?

I'm talking about the name of the popular internet photograph service. I guess the first part of the word (insta) means instant, but I couldn't figure out what it means when it's colligated with gram. ...
6
votes
3answers
3k views

What does “Clyst” mean?

I live in the south west of England and there are many villages and roads that feature the word "Clyst". For example, Broadclyst, Clyst St Mary, Clyst Honiton and so on. What does clyst mean, and ...
20
votes
6answers
16k views

Why is the “ph” pronounced like a “v” in “Stephen”? Is this the only word like that?

While I know how my name is pronounced, I've run into many non-native english speakers who have stumbled over this unique exception to English. Even in the female name, "Stephanie", the ph is ...
13
votes
4answers
13k views

Why does Germany's English name differ from its German name?

Germany in German is Deutschland and the language is Deutsch. I'm used to words being anglicized, but why is there a complete replacement in this case?
18
votes
3answers
3k views

Etymology for Mc and O' in names

There is clearly a prefix in names like McDonald, McChrystal, O'Brian, O'Neal What does this Mc and O signify? Looks like Donald, Chrystal, Brian, Neal are perfectly fine names on their own so why is ...
5
votes
2answers
498 views

Why is New York City also called “the Big Apple”?

I have heard many times people say the Big Apple to mean New York City. What is the origin of this nickname?
1
vote
1answer
516 views

Did eBay take the name from a Pig Latin word?

Did eBay take the name from the Pig Latin word for be?
11
votes
3answers
524 views

What is the first recorded appearance of the mistranslation “Red Square”?

Does anybody know when the mistranslation "Red Square" made its first recorded appearance? Have there been any noteworthy attempts at establishing the correct translation "Beautiful Square" at some ...
1
vote
2answers
6k views

Origin of the name Manhattan

What is the origin of the name Manhattan?
9
votes
5answers
1k views

When did presidents start using their middle initial (e.g. JFK)? Was that common of the general population?

For example John F. Kennedy, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Lyndon B. Johnson (and hence JFK, FDR, LBJ). How did this styling originate? It seems to have ended with Nixon. I don't when it started, but there ...
6
votes
5answers
9k views

What do the American nicknames 'Dutch' and 'T-Bone' mean?

Does the nickname Dutch have any significance? I know it was Reagan's, and I'm sure I've come across it in other books/films. Also T-Bone, as in T-Bone Walker, T-Bone Burnett: what does that mean? (I ...