meaning and origin of ‘incunabula’

Latin ‘incunabula’: ‘swaddling clothes’, hence ‘beginning’—denotes the early printed books (from the 1450s to the end of the 15th century)

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Eating in the Romance languages

In Latin, short words having complicated irregularities in their forms gave way to simpler words with regular patterns and longer phonetic individualities.

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origin of ‘cicerone’

early 18th century—from the name of the Roman orator and author Marcus Tullius Cicero, apparently in allusion to the eloquence and learning of these guides

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a Shakespearean phrase: ‘this mortal coil’

the troubles and activities of the world—literary or humorous, from Hamlet’s speech “to be or not be”—‘coil’: probably from Middle French ‘acueil’, encounter

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the making of ‘omelette’

1611—from French ‘omelette’, ultimately an alteration of ‘lemelle’, ‘knife blade’ (from Latin ‘lamella’), with reference to the flattened shape of the dish

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origin of ‘the Slough of Despond’

the name of a deep boggy place at the beginning of Christian’s journey to the Celestial City in ‘The Pilgrim’s Progress’ (1678), by John Bunyan

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