English is one of the world's most massive languages in terms of vocabulary. The latest edition of the Oxford English dictionary contains approximately 615,000 entries. Besides, this is also the most widely used language with 79 countries and territories using English as an official language.
Therefore, it is not surprising that English also contains many "weird" words that even native speakers sometimes cannot fully understand.
You are watching: What is Gowpen?
Here are 15 interesting facts about English words you may not know:
1. Everyone knows there is a part on the back that we can hardly reach, but no one knows what word to use to name it. In English, there is a whole word for this region, which is “acnestis”, which comes from a Greek root meaning “cheese grate”.
2. English didn't have any word for orange until about 450 years ago.
3. The mathematical symbol for infinity (∞) is called “lemniscate” in English. This word comes from the Latin, meaning "to decorate with a bow".
4. Shuffle the letters in the word "schoolmaster", we can get the word "the classroom".
Reference: Annual Equivalent Rate – AER
5. English has a rather complicated word for the wall between two windows, which is interfenestration.
6. The word “explode” originally meant “clap your hands off the stage” with the Latin word “ex” meaning “out” and the word “plaudere” meaning “to clap”. Gradually, this word leaned towards the meaning of "to let out a loud and violent sound" and then to the meaning of "explosion" as it is today.
7. In written English, there is only one letter Q for every 510 letters.
8. The opposite of “déjà-vu” is “jamais-vu”. This word refers to the strange feeling of seeing familiar things with a whole new feeling.
9. The word “scissor” (scissors) comes from an ancient Roman gladiator weapon with a pair of swords or knives.
10. The longest English word in reverse alphabetical order is spoonfeed.
11. “Percontation” is a type of question that requires a complete answer instead of just “yes” or “no”.
Hot: What is party? Learn about the Birth and Concept of the Communist Party of Vietnam?
12. Everyone knows that a pentagon (5 faces) is a "pentagon", a hexagon (6 faces) is a hexagon, a pentagon (10 faces) is a decagon. What about a 99-sided figure? The word for it is enneacontakaienneagon.
13. The word “noon” (noon) comes from the Latin word “novern” which means “ninth” in Latin. This word refers to the 9th hour of the day according to the Roman calendar, which is 3pm today.
14. The letter E makes up 11% of the entire English vocabulary.
15. You may not know the name of the bowl-shaped space created when cupping your hands. In English, it is called "gowpen".
16. From the 16th to 17th centuries, English had a word "buttock-mail" (literally translated as "butt mail") to refer to a Scottish tax levied on people who had sex outside of marriage.
17. “Repdigit” are numbers made up of a series of repeating digits, such as 9,999.
18. English has a word to refer to the action of "making money by any means, at any cost", that is "quomodocunquize".
Peace (according to Huffington Post)
Related Content: Electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG)
- 15 interesting facts about English words
- 10 interesting facts in English