Search found 265 matches

by George Kovac
Mon Sep 16, 2019 11:29 am
Forum: Good Word Discussion
Topic: Queue
Replies: 2
Views: 316

Re: Queue

“Queue,” has been chiefly a British usage. The Washington Post in 2016 noted many people were “gobsmacked” to hear President Obama use the word when he predicted this consequence of Brexit: “The U.K. is going to be at the back of the queue” in future trade negotiations with the EU. The Post observed...
by George Kovac
Tue Sep 10, 2019 11:57 am
Forum: Good Word Discussion
Topic: Tranche
Replies: 2
Views: 254

Re: Tranche

English borrowed this French word recently (the turn of the 20th century). French trancher means simply "to slice", so a tranche is simply "(a) slice". “Tranche” is a word I frequently encounter in my practice. I never realized it originated in the French word meaning “to slice.” But it makes a lot...
by George Kovac
Thu Aug 29, 2019 6:13 pm
Forum: Good Word Discussion
Topic: Swiftboat
Replies: 2
Views: 389

Re: Swiftboat

Swiftboating is a very specialized genre of pernicious lies. It is different from ordinary political lies, as when Andrew Jackson's enemies accused his wife of bigamy. Swiftboating, as a political device, is related to Orwellian Newspeak in which "facts" are not evidence-based, but mere tools ("alte...
by George Kovac
Sun Aug 25, 2019 10:45 pm
Forum: Good Word Discussion
Topic: Roughshod
Replies: 1
Views: 355

Re: Roughshod

Although the word had been around for a while, “shoddy,” as a term to refer to goods of poor quality or workmanship, came into widespread usage as a result of the US Civil War. The demand for uniforms for Union soldiers was so great at the sudden outbreak of war that unscrupulous manufacturers made ...
by George Kovac
Sun Aug 25, 2019 10:12 pm
Forum: Good Word Discussion
Topic: Ejecta
Replies: 3
Views: 542

Re: Ejecta

Here is my attempt at bringing this colorful word into wider, non-technical use:

<<Failing to acknowledge the consequences of his decision, Senator Pyrrhus exploited the explosive power of populism, ignoring its ejecta of nationalism, protectionism, racism and xenophobia.>>
by George Kovac
Fri Aug 23, 2019 9:07 am
Forum: Good Word Discussion
Topic: Moreish
Replies: 12
Views: 909

Re: Moreish

Yes, Iain, I agree that the British usage does add value. Surely there's a space for such –ish . In language, we should not demand conformance to a spare formalism when a little embellishment can add meaning, interest and nuance. We yearn for more in our vocabulary. To paraphrase (and contradict) Mi...
by George Kovac
Thu Aug 22, 2019 3:16 pm
Forum: Good Word Discussion
Topic: Moreish
Replies: 12
Views: 909

Re: Moreish

Here is some moreish discussion about the peculiar use of –ish among Brits. Philip Hudson wrote Moreish, biggish, sharpish, dullish - There may be no end to the number of ish words creeping into our language. Then there are the "like-phrases of a couple of decades ago. "The room was like big," which...
by George Kovac
Thu Aug 22, 2019 9:46 am
Forum: Good Word Discussion
Topic: Adequate
Replies: 2
Views: 277

Re: Adequate

In today's world of hyperbole, adequacy carries pejorative connotations: "Gladys Friday's performance report labeled her just adequate."

That reminds me of one of my favorite (but horrible) mathematical puns: "She told me I was average, but I knew she was just being mean."
by George Kovac
Tue Aug 20, 2019 11:04 am
Forum: Good Word Discussion
Topic: Nihilism
Replies: 4
Views: 615

Re: Nihilism

Let's not forget that nihilism makes a guest appearance in floccinaucinihilipilification On 21st February 2012, in the debate on the remuneration of EU staff, Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg used the word “floccinaucinihilipilification,” making it the longest word ever used in the British House of ...
by George Kovac
Tue Aug 20, 2019 10:28 am
Forum: Good Word Discussion
Topic: Wellerism
Replies: 2
Views: 294

Re: Wellerism

In an essay published in the magazine Polemic, the author of “Animal Farm” and “1984” wrote:
“The quickest way of ending a war is to lose it.”

Was that statement a political commentary or wellerism?
by George Kovac
Mon Aug 19, 2019 1:47 pm
Forum: Good Word Discussion
Topic: Tenement
Replies: 1
Views: 301

Re: Tenement

It seems that tenement, tenterhooks and attenuate (all have been featured as Good Words of the day) share a common etymological source.
by George Kovac
Wed Aug 14, 2019 4:32 pm
Forum: Good Word Discussion
Topic: Moreish
Replies: 12
Views: 909

Re: Moreish

I am weary of reading the junkish modern novels. Philip, Don't despair, and don't dismiss the great novels that are still being written today. Here are two very literate, complex novels you might consider: "In the Light of What We Know" by Zia Haider Rahman (British) and "Pachinko" by Min Jin Lee (...
by George Kovac
Tue Aug 13, 2019 10:45 am
Forum: Good Word Discussion
Topic: Onerate
Replies: 3
Views: 235

Re: Onerate

The word is so rare, it is a challenge to figure out how to use it. Let me inject irony and confusion into that endeavor with this excruciatingly correct usage: In 1657, Oliver Cromwell declined to be onerated with the crown that Parliament wanted to bestow upon him. In more recent times, there are ...
by George Kovac
Mon Aug 12, 2019 2:55 pm
Forum: Good Word Discussion
Topic: Snog
Replies: 9
Views: 1051

Re: Snog

Perhaps American viewers could take some comfort knowing that snogging is more blatant on British television. I read this use of “snog” today in a New Yorker article describing the British reality show “Love Island,” which apparently is raunchier, smuttier and much snoggier than its American counter...
by George Kovac
Tue Aug 06, 2019 11:46 am
Forum: Good Word Discussion
Topic: Exonerate
Replies: 7
Views: 700

Re: Exonerate

I would say, George, that the person in question was not "onerated" by the "inspector", but rather by himself. Thanks for the observation. Is "onerate" a transitive or reflexive verb? I'll leave that usage question to the grammarians to sort out. Do love the word, though. Have to try hard to rememb...

Go to advanced search