Word Ways


In his "Essay on Man," Alexander Pope exhorted, "Know then thyself, presume not God to scan; / The proper study of Mankind is Man. / ...The glory, jest, and riddle of the world." To know ourselves is to know the information in the seed from which we sprouted -- we are at least in part the chemical expression of the message encoded by our genes. I suggest that there is encoded in our genes also a linguistic message, a message which semantic content, and that Man is now in a position to decipher it.