Introduction To "Mirror
The definition of words was not my primary concern when first compiling "Mirror History" dictionary. More importantly, I was concerned with the order [alphabetical order] by which words were arranged. I had accumulated a large collection of words from various languages, but I wanted to arrange them according to the oldest original alphabet.
In order to decipher the oldest original alphabet, I decided to contemplate the Latin, Greek, Runic, Hebrew and Phoenician alphabets. Afterword, I came to the unsettling conclusion that none of those alphabets illustrated the order that I was looking for. However, of one thing I was certain. No matter how many different words or alphabets I looked at, each shared [more or less] the same ten basic sound groups. All that I needed to do was determine their order.
In the end, I put in order each of the ten sound groups according to their characteristic rates of vibration. The higher-vibrating and lower-vibrating sounds naturally gravitated to opposite ends of the alphabet, while the others located themselves someplace in between. For quick reference, an illustrated sound groups link appears at the top of nearly every dictionary page throughout this Web site.
"Mirror History" dictionary contains over 13,000 entries.
Although "Mirror History" Dictionary provides a place for practically any word, the arrangement of any word will first depend on the characteristic sounds of same. However, current forms and/or characteristic sounds for words do not always represent their oldest original incarnations. What I mean to say is, sometimes you find a new sound assigned to a particular written character, like the sound of S for the letter C.
Several reasons exist why the pronunciations and/or spellings for any particular word have changed over time, but I can only arrange words according to current understandings about their oldest original forms. Initially at least, I choose the most popular and/or apparent forms for any particular word. However, such forms may convey but crude representitions of the original; especially when you find foreign words illustrated with non-native scripts. For example, a Hebrew or Greek word illustrated by English characters. What we find in this case is a symbolic attempt to represent and/or communicate sound from one language to another. When this happens, original sounds and characters evidence mutation.
Different types of change account for the historical mutation of words. Such as: change from one form to another. Change from one sound to another. Change from one meaning to another. Even, a combination of all three. However, change is not always apparent. Especially if change took place over a number of years. For example, consider the neighborhood in which you now live. It has a form. It has a sound. It has a meaning. Now consider that same neighborhood as it was one hundred to a thousand years ago. Would it suprise you to learn that your neighborhood had a different form? A different sound? A different meaning?
Truly, it may not altogether be possible to obtain an accurate account of history without first reconstructing an accurate record of the past. Sometimes the best that one can do is assemble available evidence and work from there. Often this entails looking for clues.
Written and spoken, words represent any number of possible leads about what actually happened over time .... [to be continued] - E.M.
*Etymology Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Etymology
Page last updated 05/15/10