The phrase ‘increase your word power’ will resonate with readers over a certain age. I remember as a child my grandmother getting a Reader’s Digest magazine through the post every month and one of the features ran under this heading. I was about ten years old and it was the first section I went to. Obviously most of the articles were boring to a ten-year-old, but increase your word power had me hooked. How many of those words stuck for more than about thirty minutes I couldn’t tell you. But is was obviously enough to keep me coming back every month.
Publishing has moved on, but in writing this article I was curious to see if RD had survived, and it most certainly has! Still delivered to your door every month. This isn’t an advert for Reader’s Digest, and I’m not incentivised to send you there, but the link is at the bottom.
Back to the real point of this article – increasing your vocabulary. The English language is a complex mix of many linguistic influences from Latin, Scandinavian, Germanic, Asian and other sources. We exported it to many countries, and it returns with new variants from America, Canada, New Zealand Australia, indeed anywhere where English is used. These new words are supplemented by regional dialects, urban slang, corporate jargon, technical phrases and text speak.
Many rail against the invasion of these influences and the so-called decline in English standards. But haven’t we always had these incursions? We don’t speak Olde English today, indeed what is Olde English? Someone living in 1020 would have as much difficulty recognising speech from the year A.D. 20 as we would in their time. Language evolves, and we keep up or become linguistic dinosaurs.
So, increase your word power with word of the day from a variety of sources, not just the obvious ones like Oxford Dictionaries. Here’s a list of sources that you might dip into, or subscribe and have them hit your inbox every day.
What’s the worst that can happen?
Merriam Webster Dictionary: https://www.merriam-webster.com/word-of-the-day/calendar
Urban Dictionary: https://www.urbandictionary.com/tags.php?tag=word%20of%20the%20day
Reader’s Digest: https://www.readersdigest.magazine.co.uk/