October 04, 2006
"Terms such as podcasting and wikis are still meaningless to many." quote from this BBC article.
It is unfortunate that many people don't know these terms, they are part of our culture and becoming increasingly less a part of "geekspeak" and more part of mainstream language.
But more unfortunate than this is the lack of knowledge of more useful and common words. I am guilty of this, as I find myself increasingly failing to describe my thoughts and feelings with any sort of accuracy.
I say things like "well, you know what I mean" or words like "nice", "okay", "fine". words that are so commonly used that they lack any real meaning. In part this is why I read LeopoldTulip's blog. He knows words, and uses them to great effect I think.
I often wish I wasn't lazy in my speech. I need to explore the depth and rich variety of the great stock of descriptive words in the English language.
As we look forward to the great new words that technology is so full of, I think it is important that we look back and reclaim some of the valuable words that have fallen into disuse. (And not just for beating Grandma at Scrabble!) The more useful of these disused words need to reenter our vocabulary and see more common usage in our everyday speech.
agamous - The state of being unmarried
agiotage - Speculation in the stock market
barathrum - A person who eats like they were a bottomless pit
batrachoid - Like a frog
belgard - A sweet and loving look
blatherskite - An obnoxious braggart
junta - All the people who are involved in some form of political intrigue
lucelence - An adjective meaning 'fine and beautiful'
obliviscence - Forgetfulness
pseudoantidisestablishmentarianism - The false support of the idea
that a government should not support the church
quaestuary - Seeking money or trying to make money
yemeless - To be negligent and careless
zabernism - The unjustified use of or abuse of military or police authority,
particularly in an aggressive manner
zob - A worthless person
zeitgeist - The general culture, education, and morals of a given era
Words were chosen at random from the Grandiloquent Dictionary Third Edition by C.S. Bird.
All of these words could be used in our everyday speech quite easily, but are not, becasue we are lazy speakers who say what we think more often than we bother to think.Posted by John on October 4, 2006 10:52 AM | Posted to Literature and Language | Personal Journal