Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Today's OED Word: Indian Summer

I'm curious as to why the Oxford English Dictionary chose Indian Summer as today's Word of the Day.

Here's the definition given:

 orig. N. Amer.

 1. A period of unusually calm dry warm weather, often accompanied by a hazy atmosphere, occurring in late autumn in the northern United States and Canada; a similar period of unseasonably warm autumnal weather elsewhere.

However, the weather of late has been neither calm nor dry, and warm and hazy are understatements. Nor is it late autumn -- summer is still in full swing for almost another full month.

Perhaps, the OED had in mind the second definition?

2. fig. A late period in the life of a person or in the existence of a nation, culture, etc., characterized by calm, happiness, or achievement.

Don't think I'll go there.

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