William Lawrence Sr Omnibit 9-2-17

Horace Greeley, founder, publisher and editor of the New York Tribune, popularized the phase “Go west young man,” which was first published by John Soule, an Indiana newspaperman. Greeley always insisted the word news was plural. He once queried a reporter by telegram: “Are there any news?” The reporter wired back: “Not a new.”

–William W. Lawrence Sr.

2 thoughts on “William Lawrence Sr Omnibit 9-2-17”

  1. It does sound odd to us English-speakers to think of a singular for “news”. German does have it, though.

    The German word for “news” is not related at all to the adjective for “new”, which is “neu”. It’s “Nachricht”, plural, “Nachrichten”.

    The word originally had a sense of “information to act upon”, but it evolved more into a more general meaning of “news”. In a way, that original sense is close to one meaning of the word “intelligence”, which was a popular name for newspapers in the days gone by (cf the Intelligencer, published in Doylestown.)

    Thanks for letting me make use of my degree in languages!

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