M is for Myriapod
September 14, 2012 9:55 AM   Subscribe

Mysteries of Vernacular is a series of delightful papercraft animations about etymology, by filmmaker Jessica Oreck. Four of a projected 26 videos, one for each letter of the alphabet, have been completed so far: Assassin, Hearse, Pants, and Clue. (via)
posted by Horace Rumpole (5 comments total) 21 users marked this as a favorite
Just as the word hearse evolved over time, so did the mortuary, from furniture store that also sold coffins, to full-time funeral homes.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:05 AM on September 14, 2012

Love the idea, but I cringe whenever I see a book being used for whimsical papercraft anything. It's the archivist in me.
posted by LMGM at 10:07 AM on September 14, 2012 [1 favorite]

Supposedly the earliest use of "clue", from John Trevisa, 1383: "The Labyrinth is a kind of building, wonderfully built with overbearing walls; therein Minotaur was shut. If any man went thither in without a clew of thread, it would be full hard to find a way out. They that opened the gates would hear dreadful thundering."
posted by Jehan at 11:15 AM on September 14, 2012

Very lovely, thank you! As an avid knitter, I especially enjoyed finding out that the word clue was related to the ball of yarn from the story of the Minotaur.

Given that each video takes about 80 hours to make, I am super impressed that she plans to make one for each letter of the alphabet. Wow.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 1:13 PM on September 14, 2012

posted by aubilenon at 3:47 PM on September 14, 2012

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