“OK” is the most famous word among languages..a joke that enters politics and imposes itself on the dictionary
Have you ever wondered why we say “OK”? This is a two-letter word that we say “yes” and “okay”, and it is almost the most famous word in the English language, and it is known by many who do not know English, and do not use it on a daily basis, even though it is not a word from the English dictionary.
Origin of the word
The word OK was invented in a very funny way in the early 19th century, where it was usually considered a trend to “use abbreviations of words”, especially misspelled acronyms, because they were used to denote culture and are also considered coded messages that not everyone understands.
for example; Intellectuals of this period (about since 1822) used the abbreviation “OW” to say that “All Wright” is an abbreviation of the word (Oll Wright), and as we note, the word contains a misspelling (original “All Right”) ) Even if it is pronounced according to the written error.
The abbreviation (OK) was an alternative to the word (Oll Korrect), which is originally and without misspellings (All Correct), which means “all is well”, and this meaning remained in use for years until it was added in the Oxford English Dictionary in this sense in 1839, and it remained in use since then.
On March 23, 1839, the abbreviation OK was officially presented to the world by The Boston Morning Post, when an American journalist named Charles Gordon Green tried to mock the Providence Journal, inserting the abbreviation OK. My people within his article to mock as if he was throwing a joke.
Are you OK?
— Jake @ HUB History (@HUBhistory) March 23, 2018
Soon other newspapers picked up on the joke and began using it across the United States, and the acronym became popular when a US president used it on his campaign trail in 1840.
Nicknames became common in the election campaigns of candidates Henry Harrison and Martin Van Buren, and because Buren, who served as the eighth president of the United States, was known as “Old Kinderhook” because he hailed from Kinderhook in the District of Columbia, New York; His supporters used the acronym (OK) instead of writing his surname as it is, especially since OK was an abbreviation for his nickname, and also the meaning used by it is “All is well”, according to the book “Okay: The Unbearable Story of America’s Greatest Word” by Alan Metcalf.
Nevertheless, the acronym (OK) was used against Boren from the counter-campaigns, and other satirical acronyms were drawn from him, and did not help him retain the office of president for the second presidential term, but these campaigns and counter-campaigns using the acronym (OK) contributed to the use of this popular abbreviation to make political jokes, And pass on even to later generations, who have inherited little from the popular acronym craze, chiefly OK.
‘Telegraph’ (OK) officially registered
After the invention of the abbreviation OK for several years, the telegraph (1844) was invented and popularized in the 1930s and 1940s, and the use of abbreviations was time-saving to send messages via electrical impulses by some dots and dashes that represented the letters of the alphabet, and here (OK) recorded its place to send messages Easy to write and understand. Especially to rail operators, who used it to confirm the arrival of orders, as explained in the 1865 Telegraph Manual which said that “no message can be deemed to have been sent until the office receiving it has given it an OK”.