Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Check Out That Alpenglow

I'm having a dictionary thing lately.

Today's word of the day from dictionary.com is alpenglow. It means:

"A reddish glow seen near sunset or sunrise on the summits of mountains."

Note that's not any glow--only reddish ones--and it's not on the horizon of just any landscape--only mountain summits. The word comes from German words meaning "glowing Alps."

There's something to be said about the economics of language. Spontaneous order. Creative destruction. Technological development. Cultural evolution. Signs of wealth and poverty. If I was a language person, I would use foreign vocabularies to estimate the economic strength of the corresponding regions. But I have trouble with English as it is.

Anyone wanna test Cowen's Second Law (there's a literature on everything)?

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