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The Fascinating Origin Stories and Etymologies Behind 70 Common Words

The Fascinating Origin Stories and Etymologies Behind 70 Common Words

The next time you describe a Black Friday sale as pandemonium, tip your hat to poet John Milton. But just because a word has an easily traceable ancestry doesn’t mean its life has been boring. Take nice, whose Latin equivalent, nescius, didn’t mean “nice” at all: It meant “ignorant.” Nice went through several transformations before it landed on its modern-day definition. Press play below to hear the full story of nice and 69 other words. For more fascinating videos, subscribe to the Mental Floss YouTube channel.

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