How Did the Arabic Loanwords Algebra, Sofa, Sash, and Sequin Originate From Arabic Languages?

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Arabic loanwords are words taken directly from Arabic languages and incorporated into English. Algebra, sofa, sash, and sequin are among the hundreds of common English words that originated within the Arabic languages. A few others are, magazine, alcohol, jar, cotton, and mattress. Racquet comes from an Arabic word for hand, which is how tennis was … Read more

How Did the Expression “Having Kittens” Originate for a Hysterical Woman and What Does the Phrase Mean?

In medieval times and during the American era of witch trials in Salem, whenever an unfortunate pregnant woman began to have premature pains or extreme discomfort, the authorities suspected that she had been bewitched. Because witchcraft and cats were synonymous, they feared that she was about to have a litter of kittens and that the … Read more