Language Lovers

Impossible and Tardigrade : August’s Words in the News

When you write a blog about “Words in the News”, it’s easy to assume the best words will be neologisms: literally, “new words”. But, in truth, the thing that makes my lexicographer’s heart go pitter-patter are new uses for old words. I love it when an established, even common word… Read More

A Brief History of Survival

We tend to think of ‘survival’ as something that happens in the face of a catastrophe. However, the original survivors didn’t have to try very hard or do anything especially heroic. They simply lived on after someone else had died. In fact, to survive literally means to ‘live beyond’. Read More

The Apollo 11 Moon Landing – 50 years of lunar language

To mark the 50th anniversary of Neil Armstrong’s ‘small step’ on 20th July 1969, we’ve been exploring lunar language. Look up the words below to find out more about all things moon-related so that you have the vocabulary that you need to join the conversation around this momentous day. Read More

From the Archives: The Cloak and Dagger Expedition

Here at the HarperCollins Archive, there are many accounts written by explorers of vast deserts, climbers of the highest peaks and survivors of treacherous seas. This month, we are shining the spotlight on the three mountaineers who formed the first ever female-led expedition in the Himalayas. Their names are Monica… Read More

Extract from Extreme Survivors foreword

Having spent my life in so many dangerous and at times unforgiving terrains, I have learnt that to come out the other side alive you have to find the spirit to keep going, whatever the cost. As individuals we cannot conquer a mountain or a storm, but we can learn… Read More

7 Extreme Weather Idioms

Around the world people experience many examples of extreme weather, such as tornadoes, blizzards, thunderstorms and heatwaves. These phenomena can be unexpected and unpredictable, so here are seven extreme weather idioms to help you weather even the wildest storm!  1.  Storm in a… Read More

Our relationship with the Moon

Our close relationship with the Moon spans the whole of human history, across all times and cultures. For thousands of years it was a distant light in the sky, remote and unattainable in all but the wildest dreams. In July 1969, it became a tangible place when humankind first stepped… Read More

Moon Facts

The Moon is Earth’s only natural satellite. It is the second brightest object in the sky after the Sun. It is the only object, other than Earth, to have been stepped on by human beings. You can clearly see, particularly with binoculars, many dark patches on the Moon’s surface. Ancient… Read More