Fetor

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Dr. Goodword
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Fetor

Postby Dr. Goodword » Sat Jul 15, 2017 10:24 pm

• fetor •


Pronunciation: fee-têr • Hear it!

Part of Speech: Noun

Meaning: A stench, an unpleasant or offensive odor.

Notes: You may correctly chide anyone you see spell this word foetor; the only correct spelling is fetor. This word is the noun from the adjective fetid "smelly, stinky", which may be used as an adverb, fetidly, should you ever need a word meaning "stinkily".

In Play: Sometimes we need a word meaning "stench" that is a bit more elevated, subtle: "Binky, what is the origin of the fetor emanating from your room?" It is more applicable to the discussion of elevated offices when used figuratively: "It may take some time for the fetor to dissipate from the Illinois governor's office, now that he is in jail."

Word History: Many dictionaries list foetor as an acceptable alternate spelling of today's Good Word. The Oxford English Dictionary, however, makes it clear that this is incorrect. It probably results from a confusion of this word and its adjective, fetid, with foetus, widely used in the United Kingdom. But these two words have nothing to do with each other; their similarity is purely coincidental. Fetus comes from a root meaning "to give birth, to grow" and meant "offspring" in Latin. The OE spelling was old even in Latin; by the classical period even this word was spelled with a simple E. (We wouldn't want to raise a fetor here by forgetting to thank Luciano Eduardo de Oliveira, one of the long-time editors of this series, for today's Good Word suggestion; so let me say a double "thank you" right here.)
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tkowal
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Re: Fetor

Postby tkowal » Sun Jul 16, 2017 8:41 am

In Spanish and in Portuguese we find the word fedor which also means stench or stink. According to some Internet sources, it comes from the Latin verb foetere which means to stink. This might justify the controversial spelling foetor.

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LukeJavan8
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Re: Fetor

Postby LukeJavan8 » Sun Jul 16, 2017 1:15 pm

In my neck of the words we currently have an infestation of
Japanese beetles. Beetle traps use a pheromone block to catch
them and attract them to the trap. The block has a fetor
and after four of them this week and three bags of dead
beetles, this is the perfect word for me this weekend.
-----please, draw me a sheep-----

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Slava
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Re: Fetor

Postby Slava » Thu Nov 30, 2017 4:36 pm

tkowal wrote:In Spanish and in Portuguese we find the word fedor which also means stench or stink.


This does not bode well for Dostoevsky, does it? His first name is Fedor/Федор.
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tkowal
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Re: Fetor

Postby tkowal » Mon May 28, 2018 9:59 am

Slava wrote:This does not bode well for Dostoevsky, does it? His first name is Fedor/Федор.


Not really. His name is Фёдор which should be transliterated as Fyodor. It is true that е can be used in writing in place of ё, but not in pronunciation. :D


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