Grammar, Punctuation & Phrases
A collection of answers to grammar, spelling and punctuation questions, plus explanations on the origins of popular phrases.
What's With Germany's Strict Burial Regulations?
Grave Matters: Why Are Caskets So Expensive?
Indians Forced to Change Death Rituals as COVID-19 Rages
Try a Tattoo Without the Commitment
Ways to Keep Your Old Tattoos Looking Fresh and New
The Nose Knows: 5 Questions to Ask Before a Septum Piercing
Chautauqua Has Promoted Free Speech and Learning for Nearly 150 Years
Visit London's Little-known Postman's Park Memorial to Heroic Self-sacrifice
The Hamsa Symbol Is Found in Many Cultures, But What Does It Mean?
New Oxford Dictionary Will Document African American English Lexicon
How Are Words Removed From a Dictionary?
Has COVID-19 Killed the Handshake?
Celebratory Yard Signs Are Having a Major Moment
Ch-Ch-Ch-Chia! You Know the Jingle, Now Hear the Chia Pet Story
Has Guinness World Records Set Any World Records?
5 Family Traditions for New Babies
5 Family Anniversary Traditions
5 Family Traditions for Daughters
When You Wish Upon a Stone ... Make It a Striped One
What's the Significance of the Flower of Life?
What Is Smudging? Can It Purify a Space of Negative Energy?
The Firm vs. the Family: How Does the British Monarchy Really Work?
What's the Difference Between a Duke and an Earl?
Having a Cherokee Ancestor Doesn’t Necessarily Make You Cherokee Too
How the Millennial Generation Works
Millennials Are Making Birthday Cards a Thing Again
Nope, Boomers and Xers Don’t Work Harder Than Millennials
Oh Chrismon Tree, Oh Chrismon Tree?
For Goodness' Sake, It's a Mrs. Claus Quiz!
Tree or No Tree? How Interfaith Families Navigate the Holidays
What Are the Most Common Last Names in the World?
A Look at the White House's Most Memorable Weddings
The Immigrant Paradox: Why Acculturation Should Not Mean Assimilation
There's More Than One Way to Be Monogamous
Hey Dad! The Famous Fathers Quiz
Famous Mothers Quiz
What Does 'Shana Tova' Mean?
Even Non-Wiccans Can Celebrate Mabon, the 'Pagan Thanksgiving'
How Zen Koans Unlock the (Gateless) Gate of Enlightenment
Reading the Rails: What Was the Hobo Code?
Afrofuturism: Where Technology, Culture and the Black Experience Meet
Who Is Karen and Why Is She So Mad?
Quiz: Finish That Jingle!
How One Woman Unexpectedly Became the Voice of Siri
There's a Healthier Way to Consume Your Media
Many people think 'Latine' is a better gender-inclusive term than 'Latinx.' Here's why.
The origin of this false grammatical no-no is lost to history. But, we still shy away from starting sentences with coordinating conjunctions. And here's why.
No one ever says "heveled" or "gruntled." Do these words even exist? Not every word needs an opposite to prop it up. Here's why.
You've surely heard it in the movies even if you've never used it. So who came up with the phonetic alphabet and why is it used?
President-elect Joe Biden has pretty much made 'malarkey' a household word, so we thought we'd do some research into its origin story.
The Latin language may be dead, but this phrase, which originated 2,000 years ago, is still used in legal and financial docs. So what does it mean?
The phrase (which means to ride in the front passenger seat of the car) seems like it might have come about during the Wild West. But it actually took a detour through Hollywood.
'Take it with a grain of salt' means to be skeptical about something. But where does the phrase come from?
The @ sign is so much a part of the internet that it may surprise you to know it's been around for at least 1,500 years.
By Dave Roos