Friday, May 25, 2018

W2’s mommy

Definitions: “The old squaw duck,”
[Webster’s New International Dictionary, second edition (1934).]

This guide word caught my eye. “Aww,” said I. Followed by “Sheesh.”

Mom appears in W2 only in the extra bits that run along the bottom of the page, where the word is identified as “corrupt. of mamma.” In W3 (1961), mom becomes “short for momma,” and mommy becomes “alter. of mammy.” And both mom and mommy are now defined as “mother,” and nothing but “mother.” The old squaw duck (now known as the long-tailed duck) is gone.

How strange and wonderful that while writing this post, I got a FaceTime call from my daughter Rachel and her daughter Talia. Hi Mom.

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