Today’s word journey began because it’s crazy stormy, so I was thinking about thunder, and remembering that “thunder lizard” is something. That thing is a Brontosaurus! In getting there, I happened upon this page: between the arrows are all the entries beginning with “bastard.” Can you believe that? Most describe plants!


Then I found this. A translation of our orthography into bird sign language, but as of 1934, still only up to letter n. Boo!


And then, the prize! In 1934, Brontosaurus was Brontosaurus instead of Apatosaurus, and brontē was (and is, ish) Greek for thunder, so on this page there is “brontophobia” and “brontephobia” and neither have to do with either dinosaurs or Jane Eyre!

Why does -e mean fear and -o make that fear “morbid” and not involve lightning?? This is really the best book I’ve ever owned.

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