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What goes around, comes around

The Open Dictionary has featured a couple of interesting entries recently, not least of which is treggings. Treggings are ‘leggings which are made of stretchy but very opaque fabric to resemble wool, corduroy, leather or riding pants’. The word obviously comes from the mix of  ‘trousers’ and ‘leggings’. What’s interesting, though, is that leggings originally were a type of trouser, and did come in a variety of different fabrics (I wore my 1985 shiny ski pant leggings with pride, I’m ashamed to admit).  So a new word is appearing, created from an existing word and the word for the wider category into which that original word fell. Which just goes to show that language, like fashion, can be pretty cyclical at times.

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Sharon Creese

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