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10 things you probably don’t know the name of, for instance, what is the bit on your nose between your eyes called?

Updated on March 11, 2013
Courtesy of poonsap
Courtesy of poonsap

We can probably get along quite happily in life not knowing what everything is called. That is why we have the words ‘doodad’, ‘doohickey’ and ‘thingummy’, but what if you knew what their names were?

1) Well, back to the title of this hub and to put your mind at rest, the space between your eyes is the bone that separates the nasal cavity from the brain in your skull and is called the ethmoid bone.

2) And that leads on to whether the space at the end of your nose between your nostrils has a name? It does, and as it is likened to a column, it is called a columella.

3) While we’re in that area, what is the bit between your nose and mouth called? It is actually called the philtrim. Now try to get that into your next conversation!

4) What is the space between your eyebrows called? The name is taken from glabe the Latin for ‘smooth’ (even if you have a unibrow!) and so is called the glabella.

5) OK, down to your feet, what is the plastic end bit of a shoelace called? It keeps the end of the shoelace nice and tidy and is called an aglet.

6) What about the parts of a zipper, what are they called? (I’ll leave it to you to decide which part of the body we’re at now!) Well, when both sides of the zipper are meshed together, it is called a chain. The pull tab is connected to the slider and that is what you grab hold of to open or close the zipper. The top stop and bottom stop are the bits at the end of each side of the zipper to stop the slider from sliding off. And finally, the tape is the fabric part of it all.

Courtesy of stockimages
Courtesy of stockimages

7) But what about the space behind your knee? You have an armpit – could it be a knee-pit? Sadly, no, it is the popliteal region (as opposed to the patella region at the front of the knee).

8) Right, off the body now and on to writing. What is it called when a main story tells another story inside it? Well, this was used in One Thousand and One Nights and also The Canterbury Tales and is called a frame story.

9) Any idea what the spacing is called between written words? Well, deriving from original printing terms, a one character space is called an ‘en’ and if it is a space and a half it is called an ‘em’. These are probably from the amount of space it takes when you type an ‘n’ or ‘m’.

10) And does this sign @ have a name? It appears not, although it can be known as the ‘commercial at sign’, most people just call it the ‘at sign’ but foreign languages are much better at the description. In Swedish, it is ‘snabel-a’ which means an ‘a’ with an elephant’s trunk. In Israeli, it is a strudel. The Germans and Dutch have likened it to a monkey with Klammerraffe and apestaart respectively. All of them are much better than the boring old ‘at’!

I hope this list enlightened you a little, and if not – clever old you! I had a great time finding out things I didn’t know I didn’t know, hope you enjoyed it too.


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    • profile image

      Adebayo 16 months ago

      Thanks for the class. the @ sign is known as Ampersat sign while the & sign is called Ampersand sign.

    • writerbeth profile image

      writerbeth 4 years ago from England

      Thanks LisaMarie, I'm glad you enjoyed it. I'm still trying to use one of them in conversation though, it is proving particularly challenging!

    • LisaMarie724 profile image

      Lisa Stover 4 years ago from Pittsburgh PA

      Wow, I don't think I've ever not known so much in my life! (lol) Very entertaining and educational hub.

    • writerbeth profile image

      writerbeth 4 years ago from England

      I play Scrabble too although I'm not even close to being good enough to win a contest (well done!) but I shall certainly see if I can get philtrim in there next time I play - there always seems to be a surfeit of 'i's - at least in my hand anyway! Glad you enjoyed this though, Diana, thanks, Beth

    • Diana Grant profile image

      Diana Grant 4 years ago from London

      Well, I thought I was good at language (I used it for a living before I retired), and I recently won a local Scrabble contest, but I couldn't answer a single one of these questions. I don't suppose I shall remember the answers either (although I believe there are pills you can take for that), but I certainly enjoyed reading about them.