Walter William Skeat, English philologist, was born in London on November 21,1835, and educated at King's College School (Wimbledon), Highgate School, and Christ's College, Cambridge, of which he became a fellow in July 1860. His grandsons include the noted palaeographer T. C. Skeat and the stained glass painter Francis Skeat. Skeat's principal achievement was his Etymological English Dictionary. While preparing the dictionary he wrote hundreds of short articles on word origins for the London-based journal: Notes and Queries. Skeat is responsibel for coining the meaning of a "ghost word" --- a meaningless word that came into existence or acceptance, not by being derived through… long-standing usage, nor by being coined at need, but only as the result of an error. His other works include: A Concise Dictionary of Middle English (1888), in conjunction with A. L. Mayhew; A Student's Pastime (1896), a volume of essays; The Chaucer Canon (1900); and A Primer of Classical and English Philology (1905). Skeat died in 1912.