Random Fact: Snow

The word snow comes from the Old English snaw, known as long ago as the 9th century.

Snow generally falls at a rate of between 1mph and 4mph.

According to linguist Geoff Pullum’s 1989 paper The Great Eskimo Vocabulary Hoax, Eskimos have only two basic words for snow; these are qanik (snow in the air) and aput (snow on the ground). However, later writers point out some 50 other words derive from those words.

Derivatives of our word snow include snowball (about 1400), snowdrop (1664), snow-shoe (1674), snow-storm (1771) and snowman (1827).

In 1885, an American called Wilson Bentley took the first ever photograph of a snowflake.