Today’s Word of the Day: Bellwether

Happy Word of the Day Wednesday! Today’s word of the day is brought to you by our Homestay Coordinator, Molly Cox!

BellwetherBEL – WEH  ther : noun

: One that takes the lead or initiative; leader; indicator of trends

Today's Word of the Day: Bellwether

Bellwether has an interesting origin. According to Merriam Webster, the word comes from shepherds. Shepherds hung bells around one sheep’s neck signifying ‘lead sheep’ (despite the fact that we think of sheep as followers). The sheep with the bell around its neck was called the bellwether, a combination of belle (an old English word for bell) and wether (an old English word for a castrated male sheep). It came to mean someone who takes the lead around the 13th century.

Sentence examples:

Johnny came to be known as the bellwether of the class after he got up and started teaching about the conditional when his teacher was running late.

EC English might be considered a bellwether of ESL schools in Boston, helping students succeed in a global community by assisting students in achieving their English language goals.

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