T103 | Surprising Sibs: an Exploration of Unlikely
Word Pairs of Common Origin
| Stewart Edelstein


11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

In-person, The Foundry, 2 Harris St., West Stockbridge

6/6, 6/13, 6/20, 6/27

Four Sessions 

Words sharing common roots, like siblings sharing the same parents, are doublets. How is it possible that a common root unites word pairs (known as doublets) such as admonish/money, alcohol/artichoke, bankrupt/banquet, court/horticulture, hornet/carrot, salacious/salmon, witch/vegetable, zodiac/whiskey, and -- most unlikely of all -- hippopotamus/feather? We’ll explore these and many other doublets in a lively, interactive format. You will learn about etymology, and about so much more. Also, you’ll have fun in the classroom answering absurd questions about words!

Suggested Readings:
Dubious Doublets: A Delightful Compendium of Unlikely Word Pairs of Common Origin from Aardvark/Porcelain to Zodiac/Whiskey (John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2003)

Ever since his undergraduate years at Oberlin College in the 1960s, Stewart Edelstein has had an abiding interest in etymology, manifested in three books: Dubious Doublets, The Covid-19 Zeitgeist: Fifty Essays, and An Alphabetical Romp Through Berkshire Botanical Garden: from Agave to Zinnia. He has taught several previous OLLI at BCC courses on etymology, in a very interactive format, although he will never call on anyone who doesn’t volunteer. Stewart taught clinical courses at Yale Law School for twenty years, as Tutor in Clinical Studies and as Clinical Visiting Lecturer in Law, has published scores of articles on a variety of topics in national publications, and has created many podcasts and webinars for the American Bar Association.

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