For my latest on the OxfordWords blog, I brave the etymological lair of “dragon,” where I discover everything from herbs, guns, and sores:

23 April marks St. George’s Day. While St. George is widely venerated throughout Christian communities, England especially honors him, its patron saint, on this day. Indeed, his cross, red on a white field, flies as England’s flag.

St. George, of course, is legendary for the dragon he slew, yet St. George bested the beast in legend alone. From Beowulf to The Game of Thrones, this creature continues to breathe life (and fire) into our stories, art, and language – even the very word dragon is hoarding its own gold. Let’s brave our way into its etymological lair to see what treasures we might find.

Read my piece, “Guns, herbs, and sores: inside the dragon’s etymological lair,” in full here.

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