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Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Old English Words We Should Still Use Today

13 of these old words, from Business Insider (links to more below):
Author Mark Forsyth writes about the words we've lost. From his book "Horologicon" to his Tumblr and published articles, we compiled a list of the best words that need reviving.
1. Ultracrepidarian (n):"Somebody who gives opinions on subjects they know nothing about."

Example: Too many ultracrepidarians discuss the conflict in Syria.

2. Snollygoster (n): "A shrewed, unprincipled person, especially a politician."

Example: Many consider Chris Christie a snollygoster after the Bridgegate scandal.

3. Zwodder (n): "A drowsy and stupid state of body or mind."

Example: Without my morning coffee, I remain in a zwodder all day.

4. Philogrobolized (adj): "Conveys a hangover without ever having to admit you've been drinking."

Example: Pedialyte freezer pops can save even the most philogrobized partier.

5. Grufeling (v): "To lie close wrapped up and in a comfortable-looking manner; used in ridicule."

Example: Avoid grufeling in the face of a challenge.

6. Clinomania (n): "An obsessive desire to lie down."

Example: Without adequate sleep, you'll suffer from more than clinomania.

7. Hum durgeon (n): "An imaginary illness; also "the thickest part of his thigh is nearest his arse."

Example: You should never claim hum durgeon to miss work.

8. Quomodocunquize (v): "To make money in any way that you can.”

Example: Rather than quomodocunquizing, invest your money wisely.

9. Fudgel (v): "Pretending to work when you're not actually doing anything at all."

Example: Sometimes fudgeling can actually increase your focus.

10. Snecklifter (n): "A person who pokes his [or her] head into a pub to see if there's anyone who might stand him [or her] a drink."

Example: Snecklifters never pay for their own whiskey — or offer to buy one for you.

11. Ergophobia (n): "The morbid fear of returning to work."

Example: The worst employees suffer from extreme ergophobia on Mondays.

12. Famelicose (adj): "Constantly hungry."

Example: I'm famelicose for a grilled cheese.

13. Groke (v): "To gaze at somebody while they're eating in the hope that they'll give you some of their food."

Example: My dog constantly grokes at me longingly while I eat dinner.

More articles on the same subject - some overlap but many additional old words:

20 “Forgotten” Words That Should Be Brought Back.

Borborygmus, ramfeezled and zamzodden: Weird and wonderful words we've forgotten.

30 Old Words We Wish Were Still In Use.

18 obsolete words, which never should have gone out of style.



  1. Wouldn't grufeling be a gerund, and therefore more a noun than a verb? I never know where to put gerunds, but the sample sentence is definitely acting as a noun.

    1. You're right. When diagramming the sentence the subject is understood (you), the verb is avoid and the direct object is the gerund acting as a noun grufeling.

    2. Ha! Grammarians - how easily they surface from bouts of philogrobolization. Almost as readily as pajama boys go about their incessant grufeling.

    3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  2. In addition to philogrobolized, there is also metagrobolized, which was used by Kipling in one of the Stalky stories. Puzzled, mystified, confounded.

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