Autumn or Fall?

So it’s time for me to announce one of my more controversial opinions. It’s something I’m fairly unsure of announcing on here, to the extent where I was almost tempted to put this as the secret blogger rather than plastering my name on it. But this is not a time for shying away from it, this is something I should embrace.

I prefer the American word for autumn. Fall.

Now this is unusual for me. I can’t say I care for any other Americanisation’s, as I’ve been raised in England and not across the pond, but there is something about the word fall that I feel better describes autumn than autumn does.

So where do both words come from? Autumn is Latin, and refers to the passing of the year. Fall probably has roots in the Germanic languages, almost certainly referring to the falling of the leaves or the falling of the year.

It just makes more sense as a word for this season. Wherever you look, fall encompasses everything about this beautiful period of time. The leaves are the obvious example, but how about the falling of night earlier, or the noticeable fall in temperature?

Don’t get me wrong, autumn is a beautiful word (and certainly far better than summer, winter or spring), and so it’s a real shame that it has to compete with fall. But, autumn stands alone when naming the seasons – we all know it, we just haven’t addressed it before.

Spring is about the world springing away from slumber and into new life. Summer can be logically related back to having something to do with the sun, and the word winter comes from an old word for water – something the season associates itself with naturally. Autumn, as we discovered above, isn’t as easily related to nature as the others. Fall, on the other hand, is.

But in truth, these are all arbitrary arguments because there are no arguments for this. It’s simply an opinion; the word fall means more to me. It’s more romantic; it’s a better description of the emotions surrounding the season. And let’s be honest, when you go to New York in October – you aren’t going to New York for autumn, you’re going for the fall.

Where did my love for the word come from? I’m not sure, but I know it’s a recent event. I’ve been trying to rack my brains and I’ve come up with seeing Imagine Dragons live when they closed their set with The Fall and had red, gold and yellow paper falling from the ceiling, in the shape of leaves. That imagery was hard to ignore, and the word took on a more literal, more romantic meaning to me.

So there we have it, I don’t prefer many American words or pronunciations but they have the edge over us when it comes to that time of year between September and December.


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