What Word Was This Commonly Used Word Shortened From?

By Abi Luftig on March 08, 2018

About This Quiz

What's in a word? Quite a lot, actually. Yet, we are constantly changing the words we use to communicate with one another. In fact, although it happens slowly, many of the words we use every day are different from the original words used to communicate a thought or idea. And, we're not really talking about slang, here. We're talking about words that have been shortened from their originals, but which retain enough of their originals to still be recognizable - in other words, they have not been completely redesigned. They have merely been trimmed. Sometimes the shorter and longer versions co-exist for a while, but eventually the older one becomes a little stilted, and they usually drop out of use a few years after that.

This happens all over the language. The word "car" is a contraction of the word "motorcar". Motorcar was once a very commonly used word, but many of us today would not even think of the word when talking about cars. Similarly, "piano" hails from its predecessor, "pianoforte", while "sweet" as in candy was formerly "sweetmeat". 

Do you know enough about the English language to be able to identify commonly used shortened versions of words? Take this quiz to find out.

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