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Today's Word "Catercorner"

Located diagonally across from something else on

Published in Vocabulary

catercorner \KAE-deh(r)-kor-nehr or teh(r)\ (adverb) - Located diagonally across from something else.

"Jason is the sort whose thinking runs absolutely catercorner to everyone else's."

 

Archaic cater "four" + corner. "Cater" is from Old French catre (today quatre) "four," the historical reflex of Latin "quattuor." The Proto-Indo-European form was approximately *kwetwer-. In Germanic both the "k" and "t" elided, giving German "vier" and English "four." In the Slavic and Indo-Iranian languages the "k" became "ch" giving Russian "chetyre" and Hindi and Bengali "chaar." Few words in the English language have given its speakers as much trouble as this word. In some quarters it is rendered "catty-corner(ed)" or "kitty-corner." Others prefer "catty-wampus." Many in New England simply gave up and created their own word, "antigogglin(g)." Today's word is usually used as an adverb but may be used as an adjective. There is no noun.

 

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