The Wordhord

Hana Videen

£12.99

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Profile Books Ltd
11 November 2021
ISBN: 9781788166102
Hardback
304 pages

From the publisher

An entertaining collection of strange, delightful and unexpectedly apt words from the origins of English, which illuminates the lives, beliefs and habits of our linguistic ancestors. 'A wonderful book heaving with linguistic treasure, a joyfully clever exploration of early medieval life.' - Edward Brooke-Hitching author of The Madman's Library 'Splendid' - David Crystal 'A rich meditation on words, a thoughtful cultural history and a delicious box of delights' - Nicola Griffith, author of Hild Old English is the language we think we know until we actually see it. Used in England over a thousand years ago, it is rich with words that haven't changed (word), others that are unrecognisable (neorxnawang - paradise) and some that are curiously mystifying (gafol-fisc - tax-fish). In this beautiful little book, Hana Videen has gathered these gems together to create a glorious trove and illuminate the lives, beliefs and habits of our linguistic ancestors. We discover a world where choking on a bit of bread might prove your guilt, where fiend-ship was as likely as friend-ship, and you might grow up to be a laughter-smith. These are the magical roots of our own language: you'll never see English in the same way again.