Weirdly Wonderful Words

WEIRDLY WONDERFUL WORDS

Words vary in their popularity and longevity: some blossom and remain in full bloom for centuries, while others, more delicate, quickly fade and die. In this series I’ll be drawing attention to words that are not in common usage, but certainly deserve resurrecting. The challenge, should you accept it, is to see if you can drop the word into a conversation.

SPECIMEN ONE

Crepuscular. This word is a great favourite of mine, but seems to have waned in popularity. The main stress is on the p and it means of, or pertaining to twilight. The sharpness of the c and the hiss of the s are suggestive of something vicious lurking in the shadows.

SPECIMEN TWO

Gibus. A gibus is a French opera hat. It is astonishing we have survived without this word over the past century. I can only assume the more mundane opera hat is being used instead.

SPECIMEN THREE

Tohu bohu. This comes from the Hebrew thohu-wah-bhohu and means emptiness and desolation. There may be many opportunities to use this word in the United Kingdom after March 29th.

If you manage to casually drop any of the above words into a conversation please let me know along with the sentence you used it in.

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