Word Ways


The history of the American West is full of the adventures of the Spanish explorers. They have left their mark on the American language in both words from the Spanish and words via the Spanish from the Amerindians; for instance, barbecue is from the SPanish version of Taino Indian for "a structure of sticks." In these pages, I often confront readers with rather difficult quizzes about words. This time the quiz may be easy for you, no problema, for these are odinary American words and SPanish is the language of a large and growing minority in this ocuntry, familiar with everyday speech, from aficionado to macho. Here are the definitions of some Wild West Words. What are the words themselves? Answers can be found in Answers and Solutions at the end of this issue.