Printable Version
Pronunciation: dee-snor-rê-lay-têr Hear it!

Part of Speech: Noun

Meaning: A machine that prevents snoring, particularly a CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machine that prevents snoring and the dangerous breathing dysfunction that accompanies it, sleep apnea.

Notes: This is (so far) a nonce word, but it opens the possibility of a host of derivations. By back-formation we may presume a verb, desnorolate "to prevent snoring", a noun desnorolation, and at least two adjectives, desnorolative and desnorolational.

In Play: Today's Good Word is currently just a lexical plaything, though I think it a good candidate to be widely accepted as a replacement for CPAP, pronounced inexplicably [see-pæp]. It could be used in expressions like this one: "Fearing a heart attack resulting from his sleep apnea, Lois Riske went to a sleep specialist who prescribed a desnorolator for her."

Word History: DesnorolatorWe know the exact time and place where this word emerged: September 23, 2012 at the home of my son and his wife. When their daughter Abigail opened the door to greet her grandparents to a sleep-over with her, she promptly asked, "Tupah, do you snore?" To which I replied, "Well, I do, but I brought my CPAP with" (in typical Pennsylvania Dutch). Not knowing what a CPAP was, she replied, "Did you bring your desnorolator?"—completely unprompted and unrehearsed. Thus a much better word than CPAP was born. It is made up of de- "not, un-" + snor(e) "snore" + -olator, by analogy with percolator, calculator, etc. (Today we owe thanks to Abigail Beard, age 7, for not only suggesting, but inventing today's perfectly Good Word.)

Dr. Goodword,

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