The Illustrated Etymologicon-Mark Forsyth

Published By: Icon Books
Pages: 320
Released On: 04/11/2021

The Etymologicon is an occasionally ribald, frequently witty and unerringly erudite guided tour of the secret labyrinth that lurks beneath the English language. What is the actual connection between disgruntled and gruntled? What links church organs to organised crime, California to the Caliphate, or brackets to codpieces?

Mark Forsyth’s riotous celebration of the idiosyncratic and sometimes absurd connections between words is a classic of its kind: a mine of fascinating information and a must-read for word-lovers everywhere.


Thanks to Icon Books for the advanced copy of this title in return for an honest review.

I am such a nerd when it comes to learning about words and sentences and phrases and punctuation. Some may find it immensely boring to read about word origin, but I am always desperate to learn more. It is a book full of stuff we don’t NEED to know, but all the stuff we WANT to know – especially if it helps in a pub quiz.

The formatting of my digital proof was a little off which meant reading it, at times, was problematic, but this will be sorted out for publication. But this didn’t distract too much from the fascination of Forsyth’s writing. The research he must have done for this book is commendable.

The main thing I found really interesting was his ability to weave words and their meanings into one another, proving everything and all of us are all connected and integrated.

This book is the perfect format for dipping in and out of when you get the time to read. It also makes a good talking point on your bookshelf.

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