Believing language would unify their struggling nation, Chinese officials began a project to create a national language and define what it meant to speak Chinese.
What to do when a good joke becomes bad taste.
A Dutch conspiracy trial in the Indonesian archipelago gave birth to a sadly enduring English word.
What does it mean to speak gobbledygook, mumbo-jumbo or jargon? Such words are more fraught than the playful games of the Jabberwocky suggest.
In Anglo-Saxon England a hill could be a dragon’s lair and a ditch the home of gods.
The past and future of punctuation marks.
Writing treaties in two languages can lead to unexpected problems.
Despite recent claims, the Voynich Manuscript remains one of history’s biggest mysteries.
French was the only language worth speaking in medieval Britain – and not just by the upper classes.
Latin was used throughout the Roman Empire, but it shared space with a host of other languages and dialects, including Greek, Oscan and Etruscan, which give us a unique perspective on the ancient world.