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Adam Jacot de Boinod

Cultural language decoder

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A devout specialist when it comes to uncovering the meanings of language-based communication and wordless customs of different cultures, idioms and nations across the globe, nothing delights me as much as soaking in people's different traditions, superstitions and ways of communicating in foreign lands.

I'm a British writer, author of three English books: "The Meaning of Tingo" and "Toujours Tingo" (both about interesting words which have no equivalent in the English language) and my most recent one; "The Wonder of Whiffling", which is a revealing collection of curious, unusual words in English.

I've now steered into the world of journalism and currently work as a freelance travel writer focusing on cultural comparisons across different corners of the world. I frequently publish my findings on travel sections of online publications like The Guardian and The Independent as well as independent travel sites like The Hotel Guru.

I'm also an occasional guest writer for The Inflectionist magazine since 2013, and collaborate on numerous other publications as a result of my ongoing linguistic research and busy travel itinerary.

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Adam's Been There Done That

  • Author of three language books about unusual words and varying meanings across different cultures and idioms
  • Carried research work for the first series of TV panel game "QI", which involved reading an entire Arabian dictionary to find interesting words
  • Devoted considerable time to examining and comparing other languages across 280 dictionaries and 140 websites
  • Travelled the world as a freelance journalist documenting different uses of language and drawing cultural comparisons

Recent articles by Adam

  • 02 Aug 2017
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  • Travel Story
Can't stop running

The marvel that is Mauritius

Follow my steps discovering marvellous Mauritius, with its beautiful endemic birds and thriving wildlife in the form of tortoises and autochthonous vegetation at the Black River Gorge National Park. Then there's its pristine underwater world, teeming with colourful coral life which you can enjoy from a myriad of diving spots. Oh, and the seven-coloured earth of Chamarel...a unique sight to behold! Keep scrolling to find out more about what makes Mauritius a wonder destination.
  • 14 Jul 2017
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  • Travel Story
Can't stop running

Sri Lanka from Tangalle to Galle

As I dabbled between the glory of infinite yellow beaches and the peace of stunning temples, Sri Lanka treated my senses to striking contrasts. From verdant jungles to brightly coloured birds, my journey from Tangalle to Galle turned me into a keen twitcher and wildlife spotter, eyeing mongoose, giant squirrels and monitor lizards. Then there was Galle Fort, an imposing sight in a beautiful colonial town where I found Sri Lanka to remain beautifully unspoilt and wonderfully uncrowded.
  • 25 Oct 2016
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  • Travel Story
Can't stop running

Head over heels in St. Lucia

Falling in love with St Lucia is as easy as setting foot on its dreamy, highly scenic and secluded beach coves or walking along its charming villages to take in the local way of life. That's exactly what I did on my most recent trip there, where I got to truly discover why this is one seductive Caribbean island that has earned itself the title of honeymoon destination of the region, year after year. Read on to see exactly what makes this the perfect romantic destination, whether you're a couple or a nature lover seeking tranquil escapism.
  • 20 Jul 2016
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  • Travel Story
Can't stop running

"Belly Up!"

Back can wait, but not belly is a well-known Antiguan saying. Whether this refers to a massage before lunch I never found out but luxury is very much on offer in the following four Leeward Islands hotels.