Little known words

Discussion in 'Linguistics' started by Thoreau, Feb 6, 2009.

  1. EntropyAlwaysWins TANSTAAFL. Registered Senior Member

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    dendrophobia

    A fear of trees.
     
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  3. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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    odious

    arousing or deserving hatred or repugnance
     
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  5. tim840 Registered Senior Member

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    thank-you-ma'am:

    a bump or pothole in the road that jars a person riding over it
     
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  7. tim840 Registered Senior Member

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    floccinaucinihilipilificate:

    to declare something worthless or valueless
     
  8. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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    zanyism

    buffoonery
     
  9. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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    zoomania

    insane fondness for animals
     
  10. Orleander OH JOY!!!! Valued Senior Member

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    LOL, can you imagine having that and living in the Amazon rainforest?

    I wonder if there is a fear of sand and if any Bedouins suffer it?
     
  11. skaught The field its covered in blood Valued Senior Member

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    Pantalooned: One who is wearing pants
     
  12. PsychoticEpisode It is very dry in here today Valued Senior Member

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    Hemidemisemiquaver: A musical note that is timed as 1/64th of a whole note
     
  13. EntropyAlwaysWins TANSTAAFL. Registered Senior Member

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    I imagine that would be quite difficult yes....

    hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia.

    A fear of long words.
     
  14. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    "Sequipedaliophobia" (with an O, not an A) is recognized in formal writing even though it hasn't made it into any respectable dictionary yet. "Sesquipedalian" means "given to using long words" or "[a word] of many syllables," from Latin sesquipedalis, "a foot and a half." (Compare "sesquicentennial," a 150th anniversary.)

    Adding the part about the hippos and the monsters is just a cutesy-poo way of making the word longer. Apparently some people double the second P, just to get one more letter into it. This elongated version of the word has shown up in print often enough that you can Google it, but it's generally disparaged.

    "Sesquipedalian" is a sesquipedalian word. That means it belongs to the very small class of self-defining words like "short." I thought there was a name for that kind of word, but the only one I can find is "recursive." I suppose that's good enough.
     
  15. Cellar_Door Whose Worth's unknown Registered Senior Member

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    Contrifibularities, spasmotic, compunctuous, periconbobulations, interfrastically...

    ...these are the common words, down our way.
     
  16. EntropyAlwaysWins TANSTAAFL. Registered Senior Member

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    I'm aware of that, however, I think its amusing enough to justify itself.

    Meta-words?
     
  17. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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  18. Pandaemoni Valued Senior Member

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    There's also "autological" from "autos" (self) and "logos" (word). It can be used of words or phrases. "This sentence contains five words," would be an autological phrase.
     
  19. Anti-Flag Pun intended Registered Senior Member

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    I'll have to re-write my dictionary.

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  20. draqon Banned Banned

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    I really have a hard time believing that..."spasmotic" maybe is a common word but the rest, no way are they used anywhere close to on regular basis.
     
  21. Anti-Flag Pun intended Registered Senior Member

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    What about "sausage"?
     
  22. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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  23. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    It's spelled "spasmodic," not "spasmotic." That one is a real word, although it's hardly a common one.

    The rest of those aren't real. They may be regional slang words, but from such a small region that they're not in the dictionary. I suspect they don't show up in print very much, since the first one would surely be spelled "contra-" rather than "contri-", and the fourth one would surely be "pericombobulations," modeled after "discombobulate." The primary source of words for dictionaries is, obviously, writing. Spoken words have a much harder time gaining acceptance.

    If you're not just pulling our leg, they're probably humorous coinages exactly like "discombobulate," made-up words that almost look real and sound funny. Some of them eventually make it into the language, like "rambunctious" and "humongous." Others are forgotten, like "absquatulate," "to sneak away by not attracting attention."
     

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