A laconic post
One word for my Top 10 Unexpected Etymologies, in the Independent on Sunday magazine, forthcoming, did not make the selection because the explanation is too long. But it is so good it is worth a blog post of its own.
Chris Sladen alerted me to the origin of the word “laconic”. It refers to the characteristic humour of the Greek region of Laconia, the capital of which was Sparta. The best example of which was when Philip of Macedon (picture) laid siege to Laconia, as recounted by Plutarch:
Tagged in: language, top10
When Philip wrote thus to the Spartans: “If once I enter into your territories, I will destroy ye all, never to rise again;” they answered him with the single word, “If.”
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