There comes a time in every blog’s career when it seems only prudent to populate it with lists of obscure or interesting words. Actually, this came about because I wanted to put something different on Twitter for the month of December – an advent of vocabulary instead of self-indulgent links. The result, my days of Christmas – a list of some of my favourite obscure words. Some of these are less common than others – some simply sound nice to say. They all come with examples, so you can use them wisely.
Abscond – to leave discretely. As I
Apricity – the warmth of the sun in wintertime. As we see today.
Agrestic – rude or uncultured; the agrestic advance of the unwashed masses.
Avuncular – to have the characteristics of an uncle. As in, “You avuncular bastard!”
Boondoggle – a waste of time, or something done solely to take up time. As is this.
Confabulate – to chat. Frankly, the internet would’ve been more successful if it had confabulation rooms.
Cockalorum – a man with a high opinion of himself. Often a short man, at that.
Curmudgeon – a miserable person. Bah.
Defenestration – the act of throwing out the window. But we all use this one fairly regularly, yes?
Egregious – clearly bad. This egregious message has upset me. No more.
Eructation – a guttural belch. The eructations of our generation cannot be ignored.
Emunctory – related to the blowing of one’s nose. As in, the emunctory suppositions of our sick brethren.
Fulminate – to issue an explosive verbal assault. Or an explosion in general. “Oh, look at that fellow fulminating. What a jerk.”
Glabrous – smooth or bald. It was the best of times, it was the most glabrous of times.
Hyperbole. The best word.
Incongruous – lacking harmony, not fitting together. An incongruous collection of ideas both fun and egregious.
Logomachy – an argument of words. Oh they’re just locked in logomachy. Best not disturb them.
Masticate – to chew. That vile boy has been up in his room masticating for hours – it’s the last time I give him liquorice.
Orison – a prayer. Say your orisons.
Pontificate – express yourself in a pompous way. He pontificated about cheese.
Porcine – relating to the pig. The porcine missteps of the underclasses.
Rhinocentric – pertaining to the rhino. “That fellow has a rather rhinocentric nose.”
Scintilla – a spark, a flash, a small amount. Throw a scintilla of butter in the pan.
Sesquipedalian – using long words. “Isn’t it time we got more sesquipedalian in this affair?”
Snoutfair – a handsome fellow. Or possible dame, it’s not a word that’s still in use.
Tatterdemalion – a person of poor attire; a ragged or tatty clothed scoundrel if you will.
Twattle – useless talk, or idle gossip. As is this.
Ubiquitious – everywhere. These ridiculous words are ubiquitous on writer’s websites.
Yethhound – I’ve got my doubts about this one, because the references I’ve found to it are often confined to ‘interesting words’ lists like this one. But supposedly the yethhound was a dog that carried women away into the wilderness in the night.