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Author Topic: Something fishy: The June 12 crossword  (Read 1331 times)


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Something fishy: The June 12 crossword
« on: June 12, 2016, 04:37:37 PM »
It's June. Most schools are closing for the summer. You might wonder why Ron Toth and C.C. Burnikel chose "Going To School" as the theme of today's crossword. Well, actually, the title refers, I'll let Merriam-Webster explain it:

"You may not think of your education as relaxation, but, believe it or not, the word 'school' can be traced back to a Greek word meaning 'rest; leisure.' The Ancient Greek scholē came to be applied to the philosophical discussions in which the best of Greek society spent their free time. The meaning of scholē was extended to the groups who listened to a particular philosopher, and later to the set of beliefs held by such a group. When the Latin schola was borrowed from Greek, the emphasis fell more on the place where a philosopher spoke, and it is the sense 'place of instruction' that was ultimately passed to English. A group of fish is called a 'school' not because they resemble students in a classroom. The word 'school' in this sense is borrowed from a Dutch word that means 'crowd' or 'throng.'"

Nine clues are names of fish -- but not really:


The word "shark" derives from the German schorke, which meant "rogue" or "rascal." (The English word "shirk" also came from schorke.) "Shark" originally referred not to the fish but to someone who preys upon others, e.g., a "loan shark." Beginning in the 17th century, a swindler or cheat was called a "sharp." The term "card shark" eventually began to be used as a synonym of "card sharp" -- even in today's crossword. But it's wrong.

"Book with a year on its cover" is ALMANAC. The earliest known appearance of the word is in an opus written in 1267 by Roger Bacon, an English philosopher and Franciscan friar. The word referred to an astrological calendar. Many sources say "almanac" derived from al-manākh, an Arabic word meaning " the climate." Other sources say al-manākh does not appear in any Arabic texts and suggest that the word is a Spanish variant of Arabic. "Almanac" may also derive from the Ancient Greek almenichiaká, which means "calendar." The exact origin of the word is uncertain. An almanac gives deatils about weather, tide tables, world history, sports, politics, music, population data, weights and measures, and hundreds of other subjects -- almost everything except the origin of the word "almanac."

"Against a thing, legally" is INREM. The Latin phrase in rem means "in the thing itself" and refers to a lawsuit involving property as opposed to a lawsuit against a person. For a detailed explanation -- but not necessarily an easy-to-understand explanation -- check the Farlex Legal Dictionary at


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