Author Archives: hughrawson

About hughrawson

Hugh Rawson has been in involved in the book, magazine, and newspaper businesses all his working life. Among other things, he served as director of Penguin USA’s reference books operation, edited the Bulletin of The Authors Guild, wrote a column about American words and phrases for American Heritage magazine, and assisted William Safire on the last edition of Safire’s Political Dictionary. His book titles include Rawson’s Dictionary of Euphemisms & Other Doubletalk; Wicked Words, which is the opposite of Euphemisms in that it tells you everything you might want to know about so-called “bad” words, and Devious Derivations, a book about folk etymologies. He also is the author of Unwritten Laws: The Unofficial Rules of Life as Handed Down by Murphy and other Sages and he co-authored with Hillier Krieghbaum An Investment in Knowledge, a history-study of a National Science Foundation program for training teachers of science and mathematics. Rawson has collaborated with his wife, Margaret Miner, on four dictionaries of quotations: The Oxford Dictionary of American Quotations, The New International Dictionary of Quotations, A Dictionary of Quotations from the Bible, and A Dictionary of Quotations from Shakespeare. He also writes a blog, focusing mainly on language, for The Huffington Post.

Damn Yankees

As the baseball season opens, I am reminded that last time I visited Paris, I left my Boston Red Sox cap at home, not wanting to look too much like a tourist. Imagine my surprise, then, at seeing more baseball … Continue reading

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It’s All O.K.

              It seems fitting to start a new blog on language with a look at the greatest contribution of American English to international discourse: the word O.K., also rendered as  OK, o.k., ok, okay, and sometimes even as okeh. … Continue reading

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