Hard Tweets Explained: Anachronism

This is one of those hard tweets that I’m surprised is a hard tweet. Apparently, people (not you, of course.  Other people) don’t know the word anachronism. It’s an awesome word. I just love it to death. It’s from the Greeks, who had a way with words. We shall tear it apart and analyze it the way my father taught me.

My father had a little game: if you came across a word you didn’t know while reading, and you looked it up, you could ask him if he knew it. If he did, you got nothing. If he didn’t, he’d drive you to the store and buy you a candy bar. Nobody ever got a candy bar. Because he knew how to break words apart and figure out what they meant. And being kids, we would always bring him the big, looooooong words to test him with, which are the kinds of words that are best suited to this dissect and analyze approach.

So our word is anachronism. This has three parts: ana/ chrono /(n)ism. ana means backward. It really doesn’t show up all that much in words people know. Analysis is a cool one. lysis comes from a word that means loosen, so analysis is to un-loosen something. chrono you know. It’s for time. Like chronology, or chronograph, or chronicle. ism is a bit of magic that means “make this idea into a noun.” So ana-chrono-(n)ism means backward-in-time-nounishly.

So anachronisms are things that don’t fit the now, but used to fit the then. Corsets, and horse-drawn carriages, and Kodachrome film, and the cover of Newsweek. Stuff that used to be current, and now aren’t.

Of course, love is eternal. If you’ve read my blog, you know that I’m a big believer in love. So that was just a little joke.

Homework: Now that you understand it, go star the damn tweet already.

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