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National Thesaurus Day (January 18)

Check out the weird holiday National Thesaurus Day on January 18. Learn the history of the thesaurus, and get ideas on how to celebrate.

One weird holiday on January 18 is National Thesaurus Day. Check out the other weird January holidays!

History of National Thesaurus Day

Peter Roget – the author of Roget’s Thesaurus and also the inventor of the slide rule – was born on January 18, 1779, which is why this weird holiday is celebrated on this day! The word thesaurus comes from the Greek word “thesauros” which means storehouse or treasure.

Roget’s Thesaurus is is one of the most widely used reference books in the English language around the world. It was first published in 1852 with more than 15,000 words. Historians believe that Roget struggled with depression and mental illness; making lists of words was one way he combated his disease.

The orginal title of Roget’s Thesaurus was “Thesaurus of English Words and Phrases Classified and Arranged so as to Facilitate the Expression of Ideas and Assist in Literary Composition.”

The idea of a thesaurus actually dates back to the 4th century, when Sanskritis had a thesaurus in verse form, which was entitled ‘Amarakosha.’

A thesaurus lists synonyms (words with the same or similar meaning) for words, which means you avoid repetition and monotony in speeches and books. Authors use thesauruses on a daily basis! Whether you are looking for a more accurate word or trying to improve your writing, the thesaurus can be your biggest help.

Ideas for National Thesaurus Day

Here are some fun things you can do on this weird holiday celebrating the thesaurus.

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