Pronounced: bar-ag-NO-sis or ba-RAG-no-sis, noun

Notes: I recognized part of the word, but I had no idea of the meaning… and even after reading the definition, I’m not sure I really understand the word.

Yesterday’s word

The word meme means

  • an idea, behavior, style, or usage that spreads from person to person within a culture
  • an interesting or amusing item spread widely online (especially through social media)
Background / Comments

I think most of us are familiar with the second meaning of the word, but it actually predates the popular use of the Internet. Richard Dawkins coined this word in his book The Selfish Gene. It caught on rapidly (like, well, a “meme”). The word was constructed as mimeme, from Greek mim- (mime or mimic), combined with the English suffix -eme (a distinctive unit of language structure). Mr Dawkins rejected mimeme; he wanted a one-syllable word and thus abbreviated it to meme.

First usage

This word was coined in 1976

Published by Richard

Christian, lover-of-knowledge, Texan, and other things.

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