Don’t know what a portmanteau is? If you have heard of the words brunch, blog and pixel, then yes, you know portmanteaus (just not what they are). Portmanteaus, in the literary sense is a word that is created by merging two different words (and their meanings) to form a new word e.g. breakfast and lunch to make brunch, web and log to make (weblog which eventually became just) blog, and picture and element to make pixel.
You can find it when a new celebrity couple forms (brangelina, bennifer, merkozy) or when biologists and movie-makers have given up on names for interspecies lovechildren – real (liger, zonkey) or fictional (sharktopus). In this post, we’re going to dive into the world of portmanteaus (that last bit is pronounced –toe, if you’re wondering).