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1. Οrthοɡrаphiс ΡеrplexеrAnnouncement (32 visits)

Оrthоgraрhіc Perрlехer. The Speculative Grammarian Оrthοɡrаphіс Ρerplехеr is a not-quite-pointless little tool that will munge your text, randomly replacing some characters with homoglyphs that are nearly identical1or at least quite reasonably similar to the untrained eye. Why? To make digital text both very hard and very easy to find via normal search (try to find “οrthoɡrарhіс реrрleхer” on this page, for example); to confuse and amaze your friends and enemies alike;6 to pass the time in a ... more ]

2. About Us (7 visits)

Speculative Grammarian and Our Story. The august journal Speculative Grammarian has a long, rich, and varied history, weaving an intricate and subtle tapestry from disparate strands of linguistics, philology, history, politics, science, technology, botany, pharmacokinetics, computer science, the mathematics of humor, basket weaving, archery, glass blowing, roller coaster design, and bowling, among numerous other, less obvious fields. SpecGram, as it is known to devotees and sworn enemies alike, has for centuries sought to bring together the greatest yet least understood minds of the time, embedding itself firmly in the cultural and psychological matrix of the global society while ... more ] Podcast!

3. New speech disorder linguists contracted discovered!Yreka Bakery (7 visits)

New speech disorder linguists contracted discovered!. An apparently new speech disorder a linguistics department our correspondent visited was affected by has appeared. Those affected our correspondent a local grad student called could hardly understand apparently still speak fluently. The cause experts the LSA sent investigate remains elusive. Frighteningly, linguists linguists linguists sent examined are highly contagious. Physicians neurologists psychologists other linguists called for help called for help called for help didn’t help either. The disorder experts reporters SpecGram sent consulted investigated apparently is a case of pathological center embedding. Yreka Bakery (Egello College). ... more ] Podcast! Book!

4. Vol CLXXX, No 4 (6 visits)

Speculative Grammarian Volume CLXXX, Number 4 ... Trey Jones, Editor-in-Chief Keith Slater, Executive Editor, Associate Editors, Pete Bleackley Jonathan Downie Mikael Thompson, Assistant Editors, Virginia Bouchard Mark Mandel Yuval Wigderson, Editorial Associates, Brenda Boerger Vincent Fish Anita G. Gorman Andrew Lamont Beth Martyn Mary Shapiro Bill Spruiell Daniel Swanson Don Unger, Joey Whitford, Comptroller General Even Our Navels Are Hilarious February 2018 ... more ]

5. Ministry of Propaganda (5 visits)

The SpecGram Ministry of Propaganda. Welcome to the SpecGram Ministry of Propaganda. The SpecGram Archive Elves™ have undertaken a project to digitize and share a sheaf of early 20th century SpecGram propaganda posters, which were used during the Great Linguistic War and the Second Linguistic War to encourage linguists everywhere to keep a stiff upper lip and a sense of humor during those trying times. We provide the digitized posters here for you to enjoy, retrospect on, and share. Select a poster to see a higher quality image, and for links to share on social media, to email friends, and to view or download the highest quality version of the image. If you have ideas for other messages that need ... more ]

6. Οrthоgrаphiс Реrрlехеr (5 visits)

Оrthоgraрhіc Perрlехer. Welcome to the Speculative Grammarian Оrthοɡrаphіс Ρerplехеr! This not-quite-pointless little tool will munge your text, randomly replacing some characters with homoglyphs that are nearly identical1or at least quite reasonably similar to the untrained eye. Why? To make text both very hard and very easy to find via normal search (try to find “οrthoɡrарhіс реrрleхer” on this page, for example); to confuse and amaze your friends and enemies alike;6 to pass the time in a ... more ]

7. Archives (4 visits)

SpecGram Archives. A word from our Senior Archivist, Holger Delbrück: While bringing aging media to the web and hence the world is truly a labor of love, SpecGram tries the passion of even the most ardent admirer. Needless to say, we’ve fallen behind schedule. At every turn, the authors found in the pages of this hallowed journal stretch credibility with their gratuitous font mongeringfirst it was the IPA, then a few non-standard transcription systems, then Greek, and not just the alphabet, but the entire diacritical mess, and now I’ve got some god-forsaken Old Church Slavonic glyph sitting on my desk that no one can even name, and which would give the Unicode Consortium ... more ]

8. Cartoon Theories of LinguisticsPart EPhonetics vs. PhonologyHilário Parenchyma, C.Phil. (4 visits)

Cartoon Theories of Linguistics, Part E—Phonetics vs. Phonology. Hilário Parenchyma, C.Phil. Unintentional University of Lghtnbrgstn. We will skip the introduction, as we have been there, done that. Once more into the breach! For this installment in our series on Cartoon Theories of Linguistics, we will turn our attention to Phonetics and Phonology and the difference between the two: Phonetics:, ... Phonology:, ... Thanks to Professor Phlogiston, of the Unintentional University of Lghtnbrgstn, for the opportunity of a lifetime, as a student, to, on this occasion, share with so many of my fellow linguisticians my views, as illustrated above, concerning matters, which are of such immeasurable import ... more ] Merch! Book!

9. Ps. Q.Variation in the English Indefinite ArticleTim Pulju (4 visits)

Variation in the English Indefinite Article. The problem of variation in the English indefinite article between the forms a and an has long vexed linguists. In his 1933 classic, Language, Bloomfield cited this case as an example of free variation at the morphological level, saying, “There seems to be no principled basis for predicting which form occurs in which contexts.” This solution was accepted by the neo-Bloomfieldians in general. It was Jespersen who first questioned the Bloomfieldian solution. In 1941, he proposed that the syntactic class of the following word determined the form of the indefinite article; specifically, an occurred before adjectives, and a before nouns. He ... more ] Podcast! Book!

10. Choose Your Own Career in Linguistics (4 visits)

Choose Your Own Career in Linguistics. by Trey Jones. As a service to our young and impressionable readers who are considering pursuing a career in linguistics, Speculative Grammarian is pleased to provide the following Gedankenexperiment to help you understand the possibilities and consequences of doing so. For our old and bitter readers who are too far along in their careers to have any real hope of changing the eventual outcome, we provide the following as a cruel reminder of what might have been. Let the adventure begin ... more ] Book!

11. “Double-Dot Wide O / Nasal-Ingressive Voiceless Velar Trill”by J–––– J––––––Reviewed by Jonathan van der Meer (4 visits)

“Double-Dot Wide O / Nasal-Ingressive Voiceless Velar Trill” by J–––– J––––––. From Speculative Grammarian CLI.3, July 2006. Reviewed by Jonathan van der Meer. ... Double-Dot Wide O, Spoiler Alert !. It’s been more than eight years, so I’m going to go ahead and let you in on a little secret: the nasal-ingressive voiceless velar trill is a pig snort, and the double-dot wide O looks like a pig snout. (Some phoneticians will argue that they themselves produce a uvular trill. They probably doespecially when reading journals less interesting than SpecGrambut ... more ]

12. The Speculative Grammarian Essential Guide to Linguistics (4 visits)

The Speculative Grammarian Essential Guide to Linguistics . For decades, Speculative Grammarian has been the premier scholarly journal featuring research in the neglected field of satirical linguisticsand now it is available in book formboth physical and electronic! We wish we were kidding, but no, seriously, we’ve published a large collection of SpecGram articles, along with just enough new material to force obsessive collectors and fans to buy it, regardless of the cost. From the Introduction: The past twenty-five years have witnessed many changes in linguistics, with major developments in linguistic theory, significant expansion in language description, and even ... more ]

13. Linguistics Nerd CampBethany Carlson (4 visits)

Linguistics Nerd Camp. Bethany Carlson. The linguists strike back ... more ]

14. RebusWulfila Bruinne, M.F.A., Ph.D. (4 visits)

Rebus. by Wulfila Bruinne, M.F.A. Ph.D. University of North Oodaaq. This puzzle is worth 3 points. ... Lingo Jumble—Orang Pendek, D.Sc. and Orang Mawas, Litt.D. ... E’s-y Cryptogram—Prof. Dr. phil. habil. Erlösende Einigkeit, ... SpecGram Vol CLVII, No η Contents, ... more ]

15. An Introduction to Linguistics in Haiku FormAnonymous (3 visits)

An Introduction to, Linguistics in Haiku Form. Anonymous. linguistic theory, hidden representations, to surface structures phonology is, sound patterns of languages, phonemes, allophones phonetics is sounds, articulation of them, acoustics, hearing comp. linguistics is, theory into efficient, implementation morphology is, if same structure, same meaning, then it’s a morpheme syntactic theory, blah blah chomsky chomsky blah, blah chomsky blah blah ... more ] Podcast! Book!

16. Numeri++Praenomen Gentilicium Cognomen, Esq. (3 visits)

Numeri++. Praenomen Gentilicium Cognomen, Esq.. It would be a great leap forward in humanities-nerd–science-nerd relations if we could convince the STEMmier nerds that linguistics is at least kinda interesting. Of course, linguistics really is interesting, but we have to rope them in first; baby steps are needed before we go full-tilt “minimally transmogrificational principals and parametric aleph movement Chornskyan hegemony” on them. We need to ease them in with simpler thingsfun stuff like auto-antonyms, and useful stuff like what distinguishes en dashes and em dashes, or how to properly use a semicolon. It seems fair to expect our partially ... more ]

17. AutoGrammatikon™ (3 visits)

The Speculative Grammarian Auto­Gram­matikon™ Quasi-Universal Translator℠. On several occasions, mention has been made of the AutoGrammatikon™ Quasi-Universal Translator℠ in the pages of SpecGram; in the current epoch, these references date back as early as at least 2004.1 In the following years there have been denials,2 mentions,3 more4 mentions,5 leaked internal documents,6 and even some early oral history7 (accompanied as it was by additional denials). Throughout this time the consistent official stance of the Editorial board of SpecGram has been to deny that the AutoGrammatikon™ exists, ... more ]

18. Cryptolinguistic Puzzle 0110Mary Shapiro (3 visits)

Cryptolinguistic Puzzle 0110. Mary Shapiro, Truman State University. Like other cryptic crosswords, the clues in this puzzle are not straightforward. Unlike most, however, this one focuses mainly on languages and linguistics. For instance, the clue for Zapotec might be “Oto-Manguean variety alters pez coat” (anagram of pez coat), or “Indigenous Mexican language to destroy overtime prior to European Commission” (ZAP + O.T. + E.C.), or “a nice top, a zany blouse conceals retro Oaxacan language” (niCE TOP, A Zany), or many other combinations of puns, anagrams, or typographic quirks. Punctuation in clues is often misleading. Each clue contains both a definition ... more ]

19. The Compleat Encyclopaedia of Compendious Historical Lexicons of Obscure and Archaic Vernacular and Nomenclature (3 visits)

The Compleat Encyclopaedia of Compendious Historical Lexicons of Obscure and Archaic Vernacular and Nomenclature. Welcome to Online Selections from The Compleat Encyclopaedia of Compendious Historical Lexicons of Obscure and Archaic Vernacular and Nomenclature, researched, compiled, and edited by the lexicographers, etymologists, and philologists of Speculative Grammarian. ... The editors of Speculative Grammarian are delighted to present selections of the fifty-volume lexicographic opus, The Compleat Encyclopaedia of Compendious Historical Lexicons of Obscure and Archaic Vernacular and Nomenclature, online for the first time ever. The Compleat Encyclopaedia is a one-of-a-kind resource, ... more ]

20. Letters, Letters, and More LettersA Meta-Letter from the Editor-in-Chief (3 visits)

Letters, Letters, and More Letters. A Meta-Letter from the Editor-in-Chief. The zeugmatic theme of this month’s issue is letters. In the epistolary department, a long-standing logjam has been broken, and a flood of missives has been released. The logodaedalists among the Letters Interns had been at loggerheads over how to handle the logorrhea so common among our correspondents. The vast majority (of the interns, not your letters) have been sorted into the round file, as per usual, but a larger than usual number (of your letters, not interns) made it through to publication. Enjoy!or, Regret!, as appropriate. Numerically speaking, last month’s publication of Praenomen ... more ]

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Last updated Feb. 18, 2018.