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"Proper names that have become improper and uncommonly common" is how Willard R. Espy described eponyms, and that is the theme for this week's words in AWAD: words coined after someone's name.

In our quest for eponyms, we are going to visit ancient Greece and Rome, 17th and 19th century Paris, and even go back to biblical times.

Over the years we have featured hundreds of eponyms, but this week, as in any week, we'll review only five. If you want to have your fill of eponyms check out this eponym-infested story.

cicerone (sis-uh-RO-nee, chee-che-RO-nee) noun

A tour guide.

[After Marcus Tullius Cicero (106-43 BCE), the Roman statesman, orator, and writer, who was known for his knowledge and eloquence. He's one of the rare people who have given two eponyms to the English language. Another word coined after his name is ciceronian, meaning marked by ornate language, expansive flow, and forcefulness of expression.]

See more usage examples of cicerone in Vocabulary.com's dictionary.

-Anu Garg (words at wordsmith.org)

"Could one entirely rely upon a reporter who assured his readers that the people of Valencia in general were perfidious, vindictive, sullen, mistrustful, fickle, treacherous and empty of all good? Laugh with him, certainly, in the hearty old days of political incorrectness, but have reservations about him as a cicerone."
Jan Morris; Travel Lit's Novel Pursuit; The Nation (New York); Oct 6, 1997.


Some people walk in the rain, others just get wet. -Roger Miller, musician (1936-1992)

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