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Wordcatcher: An Odyssey into the World of Weird and Wonderful Words | [Phil Cousineau]

Wordcatcher: An Odyssey into the World of Weird and Wonderful Words

Who knew that the great country of Canada is named for a mistake? How about "bedswerver", the best Elizabethan insult to hurl at a cheating boyfriend? By exploring the delightful back stories of the 250 words in Wordcatcher, listeners will be lured by language and entangled in etymologies. It takes a special wordcatcher to create a treasure chest of remarkable words and their origins, and any word lover will relish the stories that Cousineau has discovered.
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Publisher's Summary

Who knew that the great country of Canada is named for a mistake? How about "bedswerver", the best Elizabethan insult to hurl at a cheating boyfriend?

By exploring the delightful back stories of the 250 words in Wordcatcher, listeners will be lured by language and entangled in etymologies. Author Phil Cousineau takes us on a tour into the obscure territory of word origins with great erudition and endearing curiosity.

The English poet W. H. Auden was once asked to teach a poetry class, and when 200 students applied to study with him, he only had room for 20 of them. When asked how he chose his students, he said he picked the ones who actually loved words. So too, with this book - it takes a special wordcatcher to create a treasure chest of remarkable words and their origins, and any word lover will relish the stories that Cousineau has discovered.

©2010 Cleis Press (P)2011 Cleis Press

What the Critics Say

"Cousineau takes us into the obscure territory of word origins with great erudition and endearing curiosity." (Writer's Journal)

"Phil Cousineau is a word wizard and his book, Wordcatcher, is a delightful adventure into a magical world. As I read his amazing etymological explanations of words from eldritch to floccinaucinihilipilification to lagniappe, I begin to understand why the Bible says 'In the beginning was the Word.' Phil has made clear that words don’t merely describe reality. They create it." (Deepak Chopra)

"Stake out a claim next to the standard dictionary you use for this less pedantic companion. It contains fewer words but sends up Fourth of July skyrockets on all of them. But caveat emptor, readers beware! Cousineau’s love affair with words is contagious and you are likely to end up lovesick with words yourself." (Huston Smith, author of The World’s Religions and Tales of Wonder)

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