Words for Granted
About This Show
Words for Granted is a podcast that looks at how words change over time. Host Ray Belli uses language--more specifically, individual words--as a way of making connections among history, culture, religion, and society.
Most Recent Episode
Episode 37: Chemistry
"Chemistry" as we know it is a rational science. However, both the word "chemistry" and the science itself evolved out of the pre-scientific practice of "alchemy." In today's episode, we look at the origins of alchemy, a few theories regarding its etymology, and how medieval Arabic plays into Europe's inheritance of this word. Finally, we consider the circumstances under which "alchemy" became "chemistry" as we know it today.