Word for Wednesday: Pencil

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Our Word for Wednesday theme for September is stationery

Stationery comes from the Latin ‘stationarius’ which means ‘tradesman who sells from a station or shop’. The word was first used to describe ‘the articles sold by a stationer’ in 1727.

Our first stationery-themed word is pencil

A pencil is a thin cylindrical pointed writing implement. 

The word entered English in the mid-fourteenth century as ‘pencel’ and was used to describe a type of fine brush made of camel hair which was used by artists. ‘Pencel’ comes from the Old French ‘pincel’ which comes from the Latin ‘pencillus’. ‘Pencillus’ literally translates to ‘little tail’. 

Fine brushes were used for writing until the sixteenth century when sticks of graphite started being used to mark things. 

02 Sep 2020
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"Spellzone really is an incredibly simple, engaging and cost effective resource - it makes a big difference to literacy levels."

Millthorpe School, York