Printable Version
Pronunciation: bid-ê-bêl Hear it!

Part of Speech: Adjective

Meaning: 1. Meek, easily controlled, ready to follow instructions. 2, (Cards) Valuable enough to be bid on.

Notes: Here is a word whose meaning the good Doctor was unacquainted with. I'll bet it's new to most of our subscribers, too. The adverb is normal, biddably; so are the nouns, biddability and biddableness.

In Play: The hidden meaning in today's Good Word emerges in expressions like this: "The US press can be biddable if you know how to play reporters." The second sense is used more often when playing bridge: "The rebid in bridge comes in handy when you're dealt more than one biddable suit."

Word History: Today's Good Word started out in Old English as beodan "offer, proclaim", from Proto-Germanic beudanan "to offer, proclaim, present". The Proto-Germanic word derived from PIE bheudh- "to be/make awake, aware", source also of Sanskrit buddha "awakened, enlightened" and bodhati "is awake, aware", Greek peithein "to convince, persuade", Russian budit' "to wake up", Serbian buditi "wake up, arouse", Lithuanian busti "wake up, awaken", Welsh budd "benefit" and rhybudd "warning", and German bieten "to offer" and dialectal bot "an offer" (In literary German the word is Angebot0. (We owe a double dose of gratitude to Luciano Eduardo de Oliveira for not only discovering the hidden meaning of today's secretive Good Word but for editing the Good Word series for almost two decades.)

Dr. Goodword,

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