Old Words

I'm working on adding more digital collage sheets to my Etsy store. Vintage and antique dictionary pages are pretty popular items, and I happened across a 19th century Webster's dictionary for $5 in a thrift shop a while back. Even better, the binding was gone, the pages were yellowing and cracked, and a fair number of them were missing--in that condition, I don't have to feel bad about tearing pages out to scan them.

The only date I could find in the whole dictionary--1847--was in one of the appendices. One of the things I'm enjoying about this project is seeing how the English language has changed since the mid-1800s. Some words that I consider common are completely absent, others are there but have entirely different meanings, and I keep coming across words that just aren't used anymore. Leafing through this thing is heaven for a language nerd.

For instance, the word "date" has absolutely no romantic connotations.

Courtship was more formalized back then; ladies tended to entertain gentleman callers in their homes, closely watched by a chaperone. No such thing as "dinner and a movie" in 1847. Also on this page, I learned that daughterliness is "the state of a daughter" or "conduct becoming of a daughter."

With Halloween coming up in just over a month, this one could be relevant:

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