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Arika Okrent

Arika Okrent is editor-at-large at TheWeek.com and a frequent contributor to Mental Floss. She is the author of In the Land of Invented Languages, a history of the attempt to build a better language. She holds a doctorate in linguistics and a first-level certification in Klingon. Follow her on Twitter.

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10 words with difficult-to-remember meanings

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Can y'all be used to refer to a single person?

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15 words plagued by unusual silent letters

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26 fancy, unusual plurals that work like 'attorneys general'

Language

Why is 'colonel' spelled that way?

Entertainment

3 Motown greats who recorded German versions of their hits

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21 fancy medical terms for mundane problems

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15 awesome 19th-century street gang names

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11 common words that will boost your Scrabble score

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Why isn't 'Arkansas' pronounced like 'Kansas'?

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How to tell whether you've got angst, ennui, or weltschmerz

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4 common words that come from words for heat

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What's the difference between in- and un-?

Lifestyle

The strange world of USDA place labels

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29 adorable slang terms for sex (from the last 600 years)

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11 classy insults with classical Greek and Latin roots

World

11 remnants of the Bastille you can still see today

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The 5 linguistic styles of exciting goal calls

Entertainment

11 tragic emotions and how to properly act them out on stage (according to an 1889 guide)

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The 5 linguistic styles of exciting goal calls

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Why have baby-names become increasingly female-sounding?

Tech

5 boring subjects translated into clickbait headlines

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Impress your friends with these 18 fancy words for specific shapes

U.S.

Where do U.S. coin names come from?

Language

Germans have a really hard time saying 'squirrel'

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