4000 Good Words!
How the good word series works

alphaDictionary's 4000th "Good Word" came out September 28, 2023. (See all of them in the Good Word Dictionary.) The "Good Word" is a word-of-the-day series under the title "So, What's the Good Word?" Since 2004 it has had more than 50,000 subscribers, with more than 13,000 currently active. It is sponsored by

The Good Word series is unique in that its word histories go back to Proto-Indo-European, the grandfather language which produced most of the languages spoken today in India, Europe, and the Americas.

The Good Word series is also known for the humor in its example sentences and helpful hints to remember the idiosyncrasies and correct common misspellings of the words in its series. Another feature is that subscribers provide the vast majority of Good Words, via the Agora or e-mail.

The Good Words series are managed by volunteers headed by Robert Beard (whose pseudonym Dr. Goodword online), a retired Russian and linguistics professor at Bucknell University. Beard retired from Bucknell in 2000 after 35 years teaching Russian and linguistics and conducting research there and around the world.

The series benefits from the efforts of several volunteers, an editorial board, including Luciano Eduardo de Oliveira, Jeremy Busch, Mary Jane Stoneburg, and a software programmer and website manager, Andrew Shaffer. Andrew created all the software for the website and the Good Word series as well as a customized Good Word editor.

The daily Good Words are open for discussion in the Alpha Agora , where the conversations wander widely. They only have to begin with a comment about the word. The Good Words awaken memories of fascinating adventures of subscribers who write them up in the Agora.

For 35 years Dr Beard shared his knowledge of words with a small niche of colleagues around the world in three books and more than 60 articles in reviewed journals. But he retired with much more knowledge about words than even in that considerable amount of scholarship. Upon retirement, he began sharing for 19 years his original and residual knowledge with a larger audience.

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