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A.Word.A.Day--ghost word

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ghost word (gost wurd) noun

A word that has come into a language through the perpetuation of a misreading of a manuscript, a typographical error, or a misunderstanding.

"Reading a text in facsimile form is like a trapeze performance without a net: there's no glossary, for instance, and nothing to warn the unwary they may be puzzling over a scribally created ghost word rather than discovering something entered in no dictionary." Ralph Hanna, Facsimile of Oxford, The Huntington Library Quarterly, Jan 1, 1999.

This week's theme: words about words.


Anyone can do any amount of work provided it isn't the work he is supposed to be doing at the moment. -Robert Benchley, humorist, drama critic, and actor (1889-1945)

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