• bumptious •
Pronunciation: bêmp-shês • Hear it!
Part of Speech: Adjective
Meaning: Offensively assertive, obnoxiously pushy, arrogantly forward.
Notes: Bumptious behavior is thoughtless and shows no concern for others. Someone who talks incessantly without listening to others is bumptious. Today's funny little word has an adverb, bumptiously, and a noun, bumptiousness.
In Play: Any behavior that is offensively assertive might be called 'bumptious': "I found the man more than a bit brusque; I found him absolutely bumptious in the way he dominated every conversation." However, other things may be bumptious, too: "Biff Wellington wrote a bumptious review of his sister's restaurant praising the cuisine to the hilt."
Word History: Today's Good Word is a linguistically recent addition to the English vocabulary; it first appeared in publication in 1803. It is a humorous concoction of the verb bump + the suffix found on such adjectives as fractious, infectious, and rambunctious. Bump is onomatopoetic like thump, and as such seems to be purely English. (Today's Good Word was recommended by Jeremy Busch, a decidedly unbumptious Grand Panjandrum in the Alpha Agora.)