Word of the Day

Saturday, February 02, 2013

boustrophedon

\boo-struh-FEED-n\ , noun;
1.
an ancient method of writing in which the lines run alternately from right to left and from left to right.
Quotes:
This, they call the boustrophedon form because it mimics the back-and-forth pacing of an ox tied to a tether.
-- Chuck Palahniuk, Lullaby
Elsa suddenly recalls a word from the recesses of her memory: boustrophedon, scripts written in alternating directions.
-- Jennifer Vanderbes, Easter Island
Origin:
This ancient form of writing is named for an ancient form of farming and literally translates as "to turn like an ox while plowing." Derived from the Greek boûs for "ox," and strophē meaning "to turn," boustrophedon describes a snake-like motion in which a line of text doubles back on itself as it descends a page.
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