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Are you sitting comfortably? Then I'll begin. This is Charles Brandreth welcoming you to another episode of Something Rhymes with Purple. This is a podcast for people who love language, and it's hosted by me and my good friend, the world's leading lexicographer, Susie Dent.
Susie, that's not true, but I am a lexicographer.
You certainly are the world's leading lexicographer. Do that ring any bells that praise. Are you sitting comfortably then I'll begin. Yes. Why? Can you remember why you're not really old enough?
Is it Jackanory or antipode or something similar? It's it's that generation. It is, yes. It's the words that we used introduced. First of all, listen with mother on the radio, with mother, the wireless, as some people used to call it. And then I think even to introduce watch with mother on television, which is where Andy Pandy did appear and I think was on a Monday. Oh, I love one of my earliest memories. Andy Pandy and the band is coming to play Tra la la la la la.
And the band is here to see in the merchandise that we have now for antipasti we just didn't have in those days.
And well, I know I did have antipode. I had an antibody doll, an antibody doll had an independent puppet. And of course, Andy Pandy had Elumelu. Andy Pandy lived in a basket with Lubi Lu and here we go, Lubutu and also totally different. But they sang together and Teddy was there as well. And I think they were on Monday. I remember who was on Tuesday. Wednesday, I know I'm almost certain was better than we couldn't we'd.
Do you remember the week? Yes.
Yes. I think this is this is all bringing back memories. And remember Crystal Tips and Alistar, no Ariston No Crystal chips.
Now who one day will do will depend upon children's cultures, children's programs, TV and also maybe the language of child with his first words. Why do we begin by saying Dada Mama business where there's art. But when I want to talk about today, are you sitting comfortably was actually what we sit upon, how we sit upon, you know, the sitter bohning sitting and the things we sit on. Also, we may have time to get into it.
Or is it right to say I was sat because it does irritate. You've told me before that it dates back to Shakespeare.
I have my doubts about that and it not quite I did I say Shakespeare, but it's very, very old and it's still very current in dialect and unfortunately in schools up and down the land.
But yes, you're right, restitching. Do you know, honestly, just sitting is everywhere in English and say sit upon judgement. But that was a euphemism for trousers in the Victorian times. You couldn't say trousers, so you said sit ponds round the houses, unmentionables inexpressibly. I love that as it happens is one of them.
So the words sit just to begin with. You sit and sitting. Just give us the origin of those words to sit.
OK, so it's Germanic. We are Germanic ancestors for that. It's a sibling of the German citizen to sit. I thought this.
I suppose that's, that's. Oh no they're not. Or is that a different world altogether.
This is, it is with an S it's that E and where it is that it is. OK we come to that when we do it. Now you've got me wanting as it comes after that it might be to do with speed like zipp is to do with speed and onomatopoeic. I hate to think. What does it matter anyway when I look at it. Sit, sit. It says it's in German is also related. If you go back far enough to the Latin Phedre meaning to sit.
And that has given us so many different words in English from sedentary to insidious, which meant to sit at your desk with dedication, preside president, sit down, reside satyal session science sedate, calm and rested subside to settle. Settle down. Oh so many. So sitting is actually just everywhere in English it seems we are fairly sedentary lot by nature.
Well take us then through some of our seating arrangements, the things that we sit on and where we get the words from them. When you watch TV, are you sitting in a chair on a sofa?
Personally, this is all about the sort of habits and less about fishing. But I don't actually sit and turn on the TV and think what's on. I tend to just sort of sit and curl up with a with the device and watch on demand. So I could be in bed quite often when I'm watching something sitting up in bed, bed simply goes back to the Germanic bet that that one's quite simple. How about you act?
I see you as a sofa person. Really? I do have a sofa. I do sit on the sofa. We've got at home a sofa that we bought. It was so expensive. We bought it at Harrods many years ago, was so expensive that as a result of buying the sofa, we were given a black Harrods card. A black credit card. Yes. That among other things, literally, they would close the department for you. Yes.
If you flashed your black card, they would give you I'm not exaggerating champagne when you came.
This is how this is like a Nando's black. But so much better and and did you know that there was a car park underneath Harrods and this black card gives you access to this car? So this amazing black car I had from Arabs that enabled me to have all these wonderful things because I bought this super, super duper expensive sofa. Well, it's been a disaster. It's so superduper. I was Italian and it's very swish and it swivels about and you've got buttons to press.
So my wife can sit at one end. And I said to the other, and the legs go up, the cushions come down, it warms you. It can do everything.
Oh, it warms you. Honestly, I live for electric. Yes, you are. From day one, it's gone wrong. So when I pressed to go up she goes down. You just bring the soup to your mouth. Maybe she made the setting up of its own. If we foolishly are eating food you never do in front of the telly, it spills all over you. The thing is jerking us to and fro. It snaps up. You get your legs coordinate.
It's a nightmare. We've sent it that we can send it back to them back. They've sent out engineers, but we've now just given up on it. So to get out of this, so for now we have to actually assume a sedentary position because it's like a double bed. The legs are stuck out in the elevator. It is a disaster of a sofa.
But I'm not sure how many people are going to be sympathizing with your problems with your Tesla and your heart.
So if I'm on honest, I may I may put on Twitter a photograph of the sofa so that people can actually see what it looks like. But the point is, it's a sofa. So far, not so good. Where does the word sofa come from?
I love that sofa is actually Arabic in origin. So it's a simple Bowring, you know, originally probably seen as being something quite exotic. So, you know, just like sort of syrup and sugar and various things that came over from Arabic. So it started off as an Arabic word and then eventually came to describe a couch or a divan or a settee. We've got lots of different different words from him. We couches became fashionable in the 17th century and then in comes from the old French Koushik meaning to lie down, which is obviously what you do with yourself and the divan originally now that apply to a privy council who got to sleep.
It was pretty much on what used to be that sofa because it was really part of the floor that was padded with carpets and pillows. So these are all in the days where they were called by the Arabic sofa before they became naturalised sofas. And yes, the divan was the Privy Council who got to sit in that kind of special space. And then Divan came over into English and Jane Austen might have referred to the couch as the settee 30. Now, very much kind of for anyone who knows, British English will know that there's always this kind of divide between calling the sitting room, the lounge, or indeed the sitting room or a sofa, the sofa or the settee.
For some reason, they've got all these class associations.
But the city was once a very almost kind of aristocratic thing. It was the place in which you settled down for a long, you know, discussion or chat. So they've all got these kind of slightly different wealth associations with them, I think. And ultimately, they all mean the same thing.
But they're physically often quite different will come on other things like how to do well, a divan, I think, is a little bit like a chaise long will come to Russia as long at a moment. But before we leave DEVAM, I go to a restaurant in the Strand called Simpsons in the Strand. It's one of London's oldest restaurants. It's next door to the Savoy Hotel. I go there because I'm a columnist, the diarist for a magazine called The Oldy, which is a fun magazine.
And that's where we host the outing of the year awards anyway. Yeah, if you go to this restaurant, it's famous for serving old English food, you know, roast beef, Yorkshire pudding, all the trimmings. But in Victorian times, it was known as Simpsons in the Strand, the home of the Grand Devam Divan. That's where chess games were played in London. And some of the great chess players of the Victorian era played in this grand divan.
So I wondered if it was a room in which there were lots of low slung couches like Czeslaw, where at one end there's something you can sit up against, but the other end there's nothing so that you lie on it. And maybe the chess tables were put in between. Is there an actual description anywhere of what a divan is as opposed to a sofa? A cell I think of as having soft cushions and arms that either end at both ends?
I think a divan only has an arm at one end.
Can you and I am going to look it up because I'm not a furniture expert in the Oxford English Dictionary, as I always would.
So originally, as I say, an Oriental Council of state. It says the Privy Council presided over. The sultan, then the hole where the Turkish divan is health and a long seat, then in the seventeen hundreds consisting of a continued step bench or raised part of the floor against the wall of a room which may be furnished with cushions so as to form a kind of sofa or couch. And you're absolutely right. Nowadays it's a low bed or couch with no back end.
But that was the idea because you were against the wall. Hence it wasn't a kind of custom made piece of furniture.
Very good. What about an Ottoman as opposed to the Ottoman Empire? Yes, absolutely.
And this is what I also imagine you want. So that is named after the Ottoman Empire, as you say, and that lasted for centuries. From the 13th century onwards. There's a kind of padded upholstered seat which has no back arms, an ottoman. And it was brought to Europe from the Ottoman Empire in the 18th century. And early versions apparently were flat and quite long. But eventually they became kind of round and the shape that we know today.
Do you have any Ottomans?
I do have an Ottoman. I also have a Chesterfield. I don't know. Do you know the origin of the Chesterfield? No.
Hey, I'm looking this one up as one has to feel. Originally, it was a kind of overcoat. Oh, like a Macintosh. And then nineteen hundreds are stuffed over couch or sofa with the back in two ends, one of which is sometimes made adjustable. So what's the difference between a chesterfield's and a sofa?
Well, maybe it's the just ability or I thought it was probably the make of it. Or maybe it came from a stately home where Lord Chesterfield's lived.
Yes, I'm looking at it. They are absolutely beautiful. Well, it was named after the Earl of Chesterfield. So that's in the 19th century. That very elegant, aren't they? What's your favorite chair?
Do you have a favorite chair? Does it? Um. Yes, I have a love seat. Do you know what love is there? Sort of like just very cozy armchairs, but the seating part is much, much longer. So you can just pull your legs up and just basically sit with your legs to your side and read a book by the fire. So they're much deeper chairs. And that's a beautiful than why they could love this. I haven't gone that far.
Oh, I thought you were going to be the world expert on this. My recollection of a love seat is that it's where a couple can sit side by side, but they're facing in different directions and there's a little barrier between them. So it's shaped like an S OK.
I think it might have slightly changed in meaning now because it's wider than an armchair and it's narrower than the standard sofa. So it's something you can definitely kind of cuddle up on. But yeah, maybe they can snugly fit two people and if you're kind of proportioned, you know the right way.
But I'm definitely talking about a single one in my house. OK, so tell you about the bureau.
Do it. Oh, have we finished all the chairs. Have you done the Windsor to have you on the director's chair. The Windsor chair. Do you have a Windsor chair? No, I don't have a Windsor chair. Tell me about the Windsor chair.
I think Windsor chairs very popular in North America, but obviously has got royal associations from here, really simple design with back and sides consisting of spindles almost attached to a solid sculpted seat. And they have currently been handcrafted since the sixteenth century, particularly in Wales. But they didn't become stylish until the eighteenth century. And Windsor, because it was named after the English town of Windsor, home of Windsor Castle, one of the official residences of the British royal family.
And there's a lovely story attached to it. I don't know how true this is, but legend has it that King George the first was once caught in a storm and found shelter in a cottage. And there he was offered a really simple spindles chair, you know, the ones with the sort of Mars at the back, really. And he had never experienced anything like this at all. They certainly didn't have anything like this in court. And he was so impressed.
He asked his furniture makers to copy the chairs for the Windsor Castle. And, you know, with sort of colonial America, it became almost the most popular piece of furniture. So still very, very popular there.
I don't have a Windsor chair, but as I say, I do have a no sofa. And since you don't know, I will share what I do know about it. OK, it goes back certainly three hundred years. The original. No, so far I've actually seen it. No house, which is in Kent, Kay and Ellie, and it was a home of the West for a while. So readers that the West sat on that sofa and Virginia Woolf, a friend and briefly her lover, sat on that side of it as well as the one we've got.
It's incredibly comfortable and the arms come down at either end. And I know that there's a famous photograph of Laurence Olivier and Vivien Leigh sitting on their no sofa. They're very handsome pieces. And I think that's perhaps what your home lacks, a no sofa.
OK, we can put that on our New Year's resolution list then. How about Desk's do you work at a desk? I do work at a desk, sometimes I stand up at it, sometimes I sit at it, I work at both a table and at a desk. What is the origin of desk is the word desk itself.
That's a really interesting one because I was thinking there are so many different words for whether we got bureaus or secretaries. I think maybe I've got the wrong idea of your house does. But I imagine that you have all of these desks itself goes back to Latin, which I'm just checking for years to when it came into English Oxford English Dictionary.
Originally, it was an article of furniture for a library study or church. And in medieval Latin, a desk meant exactly that. Really. Ultimately, it goes back to discuss which was used not just for a desk or discussed in Roman times, but also a table. So, you know, for quite a long time, a table which came to us from the French table.
It actually was called a board, which will explain why we have a cupboard. We lost the etymology of that because of our pronunciation. But of course, it was originally a cup board. It was a table on which cups and general vessels were kept. And that's why we talk about board and lodging. The board was originally food. It became a matter and I'm sure safer the food that was served on that board or table.
Do you sit at a desk? You stand a desk. I am sitting at a desk now. I need to get a better chair because I've got a rubbish chair much as I like IKEA. And we should talk about the origins of the IKEA name. I've got a chair that's just no good for my back, so I need to get one of those ones where you're just kind of permanently trying to keep your balance because it's very good for your core.
Yes. Well, I've taken to standing up at the desk because. Well, I you remember last summer I began having headaches and I thought, oh, I'm having its long covid it's got to me at last. My wife is still laughing. Anyway, it turned out, I think, that I was sitting by the screen with my neck pushed forward, looking and squinting my eyes, looking at the screen, sitting awkwardly. And so I stopped doing that.
I started standing up at the desk and then I got myself an amusing thing. Oh, next week I might bring it so you can see it. I kind of bracing a device that you put on to make your shoulders go back and your. Oh, I think I've seen them. Yes.
They said put on this. Are you like this? They make you look like a hunchback. You're absolutely it's very it's a kind of harness you put on this harness. Well, it does work. If you can be bothered to put it on, it does work. So I stand up on the desk. I sit at the desk, but a desk for me, the different types of desks that are partners, desks aren't there. And they have, you know, departments desk is I don't think so.
Now I'm imagining one of those school desks where you lift up the lid. Oh, I loved those things a bit like a bureau.
There was a little inkwell in the cupboard. I loved an incline on the corner and a little place for putting your pencils and your pens at the top and you could open up and make a terrible noise as you bang the lid down. Oh, I loved that. Yes, absolutely. That's a traditional desk apart. What's a starting to do? Well, bother's desk tends to be two desks that go back to back. They have knee holes where you put your knees on either side down the side.
They have drawers for all your paperwork and they can either be flat on top or they can have a slope anywhere they face one another. And as it were, for people who were partners in the original, you know, firms of design, accountants, the partners, the senior partners that face to face of their partners desks.
Okay, I don't know. But I can tell you about the bureau in the secretariat. Please do. Is this bureau actually were desks used in offices, which is why offices eventually took on the name of the desk and became known as bureaus, and they were places to write letters and store paper and ink, etc.. The name we think probably came from an old French word liberal, which meant dark brown cloth because that was traditionally used to cover the writing desks and furniture makers began to add extra drawers and things.
By the eighteenth century, it could have deep drawers then topped with a desk. And it was also called a secretariat, which some houses still have secretaries, which goes back to the Latin secretariat. And if you remember, Charles is one of my favorite hidden etymology is because the secretaries was ascribe or clerk entrusted with secrets. If we pronounced it differently, a secret is we would probably get that idea of confidential information and the secretaries or the secretaries, they kept things in bureaus that had often done late in their quite drawers and things, and they too were kept for confidential information and by extension, the women employed to write at these desks, which became known as kind of ladies desks because they were quite elegant.
And it was thought, of course, that women had more secrets. They became known as secretaries.
Oh, very good. I like all that. I'm thinking back to the partner's desk and that lovely cubbyhole that there was. There is. Yeah. And. My mother was a Montessori nursery school teacher, and she had a lot of Montessori equipment, including a huge wooden box, like a crate which had a hole in one side, and the children loved climbing into this hole and sitting in there. And I discovered that grandchildren love being in this hole in the partner's desk.
It's like a little cubbyhole. It's a safe place to be. And sometimes I like that idea. Sometimes when I'm writing a book. It's going really badly. I get off the chair and I climb into the little cubbyhole myself and suck my thumb.
Oh, yeah. I'm like, oh, I can't believe that. I was just looking at the astrology of cubbyhole and unfortunately I hasn't got a certain history, but it has relatives in things like the low German couple, which meant a lean to or a shed for cattle. Originally it was a kind of small coupe or hutch and then any kind of small receptacle and then eventually something which was, you know, very small way. You might stipulate. You remember the tabulating is hiding in a corner.
Look, there are lots of furniture, words that are hidden inside other words, aren't they? Should we take a break and then you can reveal some of those to us.
Perfect. This is something rhymes with purple, we're talking furniture. It's a funny subject we're talking about. We've touched on IKEA before Amway because I think you tell me what the origin was, but I can't remember. It's a famous brand name, very famous.
It goes back to Ingvar Kamprad, who began his business career by selling wooden matches. He rode his bike from famed farm and sold matches. And then he was seen pedaling around selling Christmas ornaments and ballpoint pens, even fish. And before long, he began to sell the furniture of local artisans. And that was how it all started. If you take the initials of Ingvar Kamprad, you have the I and K, and then his family farm was called and harrowed.
Sorry about my pronunciation. And the village of his birth was again added. And then you got initialism. IKEA.
We've created about 100 episodes of something around with Bubble and we did a whole episode devoted to brands that we called it anyway. We did do an episode on Brand so you can dig it up in the past. But you were telling me that there are words that have furniture hidden in them. Explain that.
Yes, I think one of the best known and we may have covered it in our money episode is bankrupt because the bank in a bankrupt was once a bench and these were moneylenders benches. So you would find them in the streets of medieval Britain. You would sometimes find them with gory meat, raw flesh and things that the butchers were selling on the streets. And these tables became known as shambles, which is where we get the idea of a bloody mess from today.
But the bank was a table, essentially, and when the money lender went out of business, either metaphorically or physically, the bench would be smashed or broken. To indicate that he was no longer operating and bankrupt. Goes back to the Italian banker.
What a broken bench, which is quite cool. I think kids tend to like that one. Or maybe they like the idea of shambles just because it's always applied to their rooms later is another one. Can you guess what word might be behind litter litter?
Well, I do know having a love of carry on films. One of my favorites is The One and the set in the French Revolution, where Kenneth Williams, I think plays Legoff Ramadge The Big Cheese. And I think he's brought on in a little. It's a kind of like a sedan chair, almost a quarter sedan chair. You can tell me that because it comes from the down. I suppose you sit in.
I know it comes from Sadara to sit. So he goes back to that lesson, right. It's a chair in a sedan chair. You're sitting well, it's actually tautologically to relying on it. Really? Yeah. So you're sitting in a chair and you're carried in and that was sometimes called a litter. The pope, when his crown comes into St. Peter's Square, he is carried on a litter, isn't he? Yes. Guys with big, big biceps have carrying him and his chair is on top of a platform which is carried along.
That is a lit up. Oh, yeah.
Think of your French hair because it goes back to the French east, meaning a bed. And it's actually fairly sad story in that it looks back to people who couldn't afford proper beds so would make them out of straw paper, whatever they had handy, and that would be then discarded the following day because it would be considered soiled, which is where we get the idea of litter being rubbish. But ultimately it goes back to that idea of of a bed.
And when we talk about a litter of puppies, it is the idea, again, of sort of lying down and, you know, and just sort of curling up, I suppose, and then giving birth from that point of view. But it's all still lying down in bed.
So you're lying down on the bed. And when you were brought in on a litter, it meant you were like a kind of Roman emperor. You'd be lying back on your bed and the bed would be carried into the room. Yeah, the little yes. On which the pope sat or was carried in once he'd become pope. The reason that I'm conscious of it is I do remember there was controversy hundreds of years ago when they thought they'd elected somebody who turned out to be a woman.
Pope John, you know about this? Well, there was briefly a pope called Pope Joan, and she was female and but she was actually elected pope. So she must have been a cardinal. And they made her. But we didn't want this to happen again. And so what they did, whenever a new pope was elected and we're going back to pre medieval times, they would put the pope on the litter in his purple robes and they would carry him in.
So he was, as it were, above he was being held up and there would be a hole cut in the bottom of the litter and the cardinals would walk underneath the papal litter and gaze upward at the pope's nether regions to make sure that it wasn't a woman, that it was a man. And they would go under. They would say they would stop it. They would goes up and they would. In Latin, of course, gesticulates habit at Benay pendant days, oh, my God, he's got them and they're hanging nicely and then they would walk on and that's how they would know that the pope was a bloke.
And it was all thanks to the people lit up with a hole cut through the middle of it.
What an extraordinary story. Anyway, that's the joy of language. It takes you to places that one would not think of. You told me once the parasite had something to do with furniture and I can't think of except, well, in a sort of slightly extended sense because the parasite goes back to the Greek for sitting beside. So the idea was that a parasite was originally a small feast. And if you remember, a small feast is. But it's somebody who always manages to turn up whenever they smell good food.
So a small feast is the friend that just never fails to show up when you're cooking and a parasite with vaguely similar. They would pinch your food. That was the original meaning. So they would sit next to you and pinch your food. And thus they were kind of preying on your hospitality. And if you remember, there are so many connections with food, whether it's a mate who is someone with whom you ate your meat because the two are very close siblings, meat and meat companions, somebody with whom you broke your bread, etc.
. So parasite, again, the idea of sitting and eating, but in this case, pinching from somebody else's plate.
If people have got questions about furniture and the origins of the names of bits and pieces around their house, do get in touch with us. I'd like to know about two before we move on. One is Bric-A-Brac and the other is are they both French? Bric-A-Brac means bits and pieces by bits and pieces. Yes.
My Bric-A-Brac Bric-A-Brac follows the rules of something called ablaut reduplication. Remember this, which is how we unconsciously know that it's not going to be bric-a-brac is going to be bric-a-brac. Likewise, bells will never go Dongting. We will never sit on a saucy we will never eat a cat kit and so on and so on and French. It comes from the French bric a brac randomly or willy nilly. So one of those has been kind of added on for the sort of rhyming element.
Not sure whether it's bric-a-brac French speakers who are listening and will be able to tell us. But yeah, it's Malonis small objects and ornaments that sort of trend. Clémence aren't they. Which is another word for Bric-A-Brac. It's kind of knickknacks and knickknack is yet another tranquil, tranquil and a lot of tranqs elements. What's that. Oh yes.
Trian comments are simply Trump refinery. So sort of little ornaments. Oh there's so many words for them.
Gewgaws, George Gewgaws. So I think I've never had to use it. Well there you are. I'm sure it's drawer's not gewgaws. I'm sure you're right.
GW you don't believe maybe you're right. I've always said I'm going to look it up now. Gewgaws will do so knickknack with better dogbone. This old man is going home.
It was originally a party trick or a sleight of hand before it became a light denty article of furniture. I get to look up Dugal because I've never in my life had to use it. I've just had it in my head. It's a bit like hyper bowl and oxymoron, which is how I used to read the hyperbole and oxymorons. OK. Goo, I was right, just because the dictionary says Google doesn't mean to say you are right.
Isn't it funny? You probably not ever used to either have? No, I have been using it and I've been using it incorrectly. And people somehow assume that I know I know it. So I probably do a lot of people as Dujon as Google, it's Google. So, ah, there you are. Misinformed you. It's Google from now on in.
Mamadu, I don't suppose you've done that very often. So I'll give you one more word that has furniture hidden behind it. And that's the canapé that if you are lucky enough to go to a party these days, well, we won't be at the moment, but hopefully very soon you might be offered a canapé. And actually that is related to canopy. And a canopy was originally a mosquito net that was put over a bed in hot countries. It goes back to the Greek collapse, meaning a mosquito.
And eventually that mosquito idea was transferred from the net to the bed and the canopy became a bed. And the idea of the kind of space that you have at a party is that they are tiny little pieces of toast or whatever it is, the little Blainey's that you have little toppings on, they are like little beds or little sofas that people put things on top of.
Is the puf related to puff as in puff pastry? Is it? All I think it is a puff is slightly. I'm sure it's like an Ottoman. It's a stool.
Yes, it says Origin, uncertain, probably a transferred sense of puff, the action of puffing. And so being a bit blown up, it's actually related, we think, to a later version of the word, meaning an elaborate female headdress fashionable in the eighteenth century or high role of hair worn by women. So I think the idea is always kind of something inflated.
I love this. I love playing with words. I'm just thinking about stool and all the various. Oh, yes. Why is the stool that you sit on called a stool and why is as it were when you opened your balls? The result also called a stool. Yes.
Well, again, I think it's that kind of shift. So it was Germanic. It goes back to a Saxon word style, which is probably related to the idea of a throne or seat. It was a church pew for quite a long time. It was a seat for an offender. Of course, we had the cooking stools during the horrible kind of witch persecutions.
I'm just looking to see, what did you say? Yes, I thought they were ducking stools.
They were cooking stools as well. So to cook it related to tax, that was actually to relieve your bowels, as you say. So I think that is why the result of opening your vowels then came to be called a stool as well. How interesting. That all goes back to the seat that you want sat on.
We're back where we began. We're back seated where we began. And just finally remind me I'm wrong to get uppity when people say I was that as opposed to I was sitting.
Well, I was well, I know you're not wrong to get uppity because it's important to be passionate about language. And I totally understand how it will actually get on people's nerves. But, you know, it has been around in dialect for a very, very long time using that past participle rather than the imperfect tense sitting. Strictly speaking, if you want to use standard English and not annoy your reader or listener, you should probably say I was sitting, but I'm afraid a bit like mischievous.
It might be a lost cause. Good.
Have we had any queries from people? Because if you have got questions you want to ask, well, suddenly appeared to give them a go. Please be in touch with us. It's purple at something else. Dot com recommenders too. We like that. We need the purple people. Yes. Amber to grow. Have people been in touch this week? They have.
We had a nice email from Chris Lewis inspired by the word onomatopoeia. And you remember the song and I said, is sentence's alternative definitions onomatopoeia? What an incontinent Italian cat does onomatopoeic.
Oh, I love it. Onomatopoeia. I love it. Oh, what an Italian magician's cat does.
On that. Trying to get that one Italian magician's cat doesn't know, oh, I'm at a period brilliant, that is very, very good.
And then we've got a e-mail from Laura O'Connor who asks if there's a link between Tydings tide and Tide that sounds so similar, but their meanings seem very different. Brilliant question. They are all related because the noun tide originally meant time and that then percolates through all the other meanings. So time that sense survives in the names of times of the year like Yuletide, which we've just had Whitsuntide and tide originally meant timely or seasonable in season. And it took that meaning of being timely to to be kind of appropriate or fit for purpose.
And it's from there that it developed modern sense of goodlooking or in good order and neat. But it all goes back to that idea of being timely and on time and then tied again. The time element is there because that became associated with the times of high and low water at particular places along the coast. And finally, Tydings, they were originally events that took place at a certain time. So they were new. So we talk about good tidings, of course, at Christmas time.
But the original was we have news of events that happened at a particular time.
So, as I say, the common leitmotif or theme throughout all of this is time.
Very good. I like it anymore. That's it for today, I think we've got my treat. Oh, I want Susie, we want three new words from you. What are your three words this week?
Well, you know, our discussion is actually prompted me to revisit at least two that I may have mentioned before, but I hope you'll forgive me because you were talking about the pope's testicles. And that reminded me, of course, of testicular eating, which is a modern blend. You won't find that in the dictionary yet.
But to gesticulate is to talk bollocks was waving your hands around you, which I think is quite good. And we talked about parasites as well. And I think rather than pinching the food of someone next to you, you can just stare in envy. And hopefully that might give you some. And that's croaking. Remember croaking. It's to basically stare longingly at someone else's food.
Lovely. This happens to me all the time in the days when I used to go to a restaurant, so long since I've been to one, I've almost forgotten what to do. I never know what to order. I always order at the last minute. I always regret what I've ordered. The moment the food arrives, I always want the person next to me is good. And often I'm with kind people who say, well, then when they've swapped, I then regret it and they have to swap back.
So by the time I eat the food, it's cold. So I am a natural drinker. There you go.
It's usually dogs, actually it's dogs. And Gyles Brandreth I am a gesticulating gurukul. There you go. Well that is your last one and my final one is just I don't know, it's something that you can't actually see me too well on here just hopefully. But I am wearing a cover slut because just before we came on air I realized that my top, my shirt had some moisturizer that had been spilt on it and it just looked very dodgy. So I put on a jumper over the top and that is a cover slut.
It's an item of clothing worn over another to hide any unsightly blemishes.
How interesting you use the word dodgy. When does that come about to mean something is a bit doubtful. Dodging is to move out of the way, isn't it? Exactly.
But that's what a criminal would do, wouldn't it? So I think the criminal sense of dodging and sort of just thinking the French verb SGV, if you're full of dodges and Trixi and Artful, I think it kind of became associated with what you might get up to.
That takes us back to Dickens, of course, the Artful Dodger Dodger. Nothing dodgy about my poem this week. It's from Shakespeare's play Twelfth Night, performed this week. Well, last week, the last few days first I think sixteen hundred. So quite a long time ago. It's my favorite Shakespeare comedy and there's a lovely song in it sung by Feste that I'm going to read is my poem of the week. And I love this song because it contains some of my favorite words written by Shakespeare a long time ago when that I was on a little tiny boy with Hey Ho the wind and the rain.
A foolish thing was but a toy for the rain. It rained every day. But when I came to man's estate with Hey Ho the wind and the rain against knaves and thieves and shut their gate for the rain, it rained every day. But when I came, alas, to arrive with hey ho the wind and the rain by swaggering, could I never thrive for the rain. It rained every day. But when I came onto my beds with hey ho the wind and the rain with tosspot still had drunken heads for the rain.
It rained every day. A great while ago the world begun with hey ho, the wind and the rain. But that's all one. Our play is done and will strive to please you every day. I love that.
Absolutely beautiful. It also just reminded me of the original meaning of Tosspot. Do you remember somebody who just tossed back their pot of beer?
That's what we want to have a year where we're all tosspot happily tossing back our beer or whatever we like most. That's our aim. We aim to please you every day or at least every week. There's a new something rhymes with purple. Every Tuesday they're up to nearly a hundred past episodes. You can find them there and I hope you'll find us this time next week. And if you enjoyed it, please spread the word and you ought to get in touch.
It's purple at something else.
Dot com something. Why is it purple? Is there something else? Production. It was produced by Lawrence Bassett with additional production from Harriott. Well, Steve Ella McCloud, Jay Beal and the Tosspot Incarnate himself.
And you know, I glanced up the other day when he was being carried through the office on his letter and I have to say gesticulates habit at Benay Pendent is well done Gullu.