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Wordplay

By Jerome Abellon II AB IS

We all know that Shakespeare was a very creative man in terms of the language and words he used. But did you know that most of the words and phrases we use today mostly came from him? Here are a few examples:

1. Eyeball

He first used this in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Back in the day nobody knew what eyeballs were, until Shakespeare wrote it down.

2. Puking

He first used this in As You Like It. I wonder what people thought of when they saw other people actually “puking”.

3. Alligator

He first used this in Romeo and Juliet. In the original text it’s spelled “allegater”. Who knew right?

4. Wormhole

He first used this in The Rape of Lucrece. I don’t know what Shakespeare was thinking back then. A wormhole can have 2 meanings: One is related to space and spacetravel(which he probably didn’t have an idea what those are) and the other is just that. A wormhole. Pretty straightforward.

5. The Game is Afoot

First used in Henry IV. If my memory serves me right this means that “the hunt is on” or “the game has just begun”. Something like that.

6. Hot-Blooded

First used in King Lear. This basically means that one is short-tempered or gets angry easily. I think. Maybe people in his era were always getting into fights.

And there you have it. All of these words and phrases came from one man. Incredible.

Source: http://www.cracked.com/article_15859_10-words-phrases-you-wont-believe-shakespeare-invented.html

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Categories: Multimedia Essays
  1. October 7, 2012 at 10:15 pm

    A genius of his time, Shakespeare is said to have introduced around 3,000 words in the Oxford English Dictionary (http://www.bardweb.net/language.html).
    Some words might have spurn out of commonsense like “eyeball” which is basically a compound word strung by putting the known meanings of an eye and a ball. While, some words like “alligator” somehow came out of nowhere. I wouldn’t know. But the point is, it’s really amazing how one man managed to expand English vocabulary in a single life time. Words are being added in the dictionary every year, however it is truly rare to find someone like Shakespeare who can pull off coining thousands of words and be accepted in a structured language system.

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