Love words, love this post about one of my loves!
A clue on Jeopardy! the other day put the word “AMATEUR” into a completely new context for me. Oftentimes, words have more than one meaning; but their modern meanings grow so prevalent, we often forget what else they could signify. And, when the modern meaning of a word is a negative one, it can oftentimes leave people feeling hurt or rejected. Hence, the true adage:
Now, the word “amateur” is most times thought to mean, “a person inexperienced or unskilled in a particular activity.”
However — the word is actually derived from the Latin amare, which means “to love.” Then, we have the Latin amator, or “lover.” Fast-forwarding, we have the Italian and French for “lover,” amatore and amateur respectively. So, really — amateur just means lover. Its connotations of a “dabbler” only date from around 1786.
Now we see that we must look much more closely at words!
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