What is a gallimaufry anyway? And when did you last hear someone refer to the wireless? What was the original paraphernalia? Would you wear a billycock? Language is always changing, and here Michael Quinion, author of the bestselling POSH and Other Language Myths, has gathered together some fascinating examples of words and meanings which have vanished from our language. Sometimes a word is lost when the thing it describes becomes obsolete,sometimes it survives in a figurative sense while the original meaning is lost, and sometimes it simply gives way to a more popular alternative. The story of these and many other words opens a window into the lives of past speakers of the English language.