Friday, 14 September, 2018

“How do you properly spell OK? And is it a noun, verb, adjective, adverb, or interjection? Indeed, is it a word at all, an abbreviation, or something else?” So asks Allan Metcalf in OK: The Improbable Story of America’s Greatest Word. OK, okay, ok, or k, if you’re texting, is probably the most widely used word in the world. It feels like Shakespeare, but it’s origins can be found in a Bostonian language fad from the 1830s when young people, anticipating Twitter, misspelled abbreviations. So, “KC” meant “knuff ced” and “OW” was “oll wright.” One by one, these fell by the wayside, but the abbreviation for “oll korrect” persisted. Vox tells the story.

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