I came across the word “transmogrify” today and wondered if the author first learned it reading Calvin & Hobbes, as I don’t recall ever seeing the word before that. Luckily for us denizens of the 21st Century, we can ask Google’s Ngrams the popularity of a word back a few centuries:

Turns out no, the word isn’t new to Calvin & Hobbes. It was used to describe a receipe for cooking pigeon in the early 1800s, a word in a book about rhetoric, and a good with a glossary of words used in poetry. But yes, the popularity has grown dramatically again since Calvin built his transmogrifier.

This post is more of a tiny rabbit hole than the forest of all knowledge, but I grew up reading Calvin & Hobbes in newspapers, and all my children grew up reading them in the form of books.

By "Luni"


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