Wordsmiths Weigh In On Which Obscure Words They Wish Were Used More
Photo by Joshua Hoehne on Unsplash

English is an ever-evolving language, with new words coming to be and old words falling out of fashion all the time.

Some older words are actually quite useful or fun, though, and could have a place in the modern language.


Reddit user emkatherine asked:

“In the English language, what's an old-fashioned or obscure word you wish were used more often?"

“Overmorrow/ereyesterday just easier to say than the day after/before tomorrow/yesterday. l still use these terms in Dutch (overmorgen/eergisteren).”

“I wonder why the English stopped.”

-cantbakemistake

“Quibble: a slight objection or criticism of a trivial matter.”

-FintheFig

“Clement, which means mild and is most often used as an adjective to describe weather. We use ‘inclement weather’ all the time, so why not ’clement weather?’”

-atreeofnight

“Perambulate ~ Walking for pleasure”

-KnotKarma

I use this and my girlfriend rolls her eyes.“

“I take the cat on his morning perambulations.”

-Emergency-Hope-1088

​“Boondoggle. Something that is a waste of time, but has the appearance of being practical.”

-aloha_skye

“Boondoggle is super common in American politics. I don't know if it's used elsewhere. Politically, it's often used to describe an expensive project that is presented as being for the public good but is actually a favor to a particular donor or a way to filter government funds to the contractor that builds it.”

-TheRevEO​

“Gobsmacked, I thinks it's more common in the Commonwealth but not in America.”

-soline

“‘Common in the commonwealth’ tickled me a tad.”

-OverunityMachine

“Defenestration—the act of throwing something or someone out of a window.”

-TimeTraveler3056

If I could throw in an Old English word I wish we used?”

“Bōchord or maybe bochord : library, collection of books, essentially book +‎ hoard.”

-KarmaKitty4-3

“Aglet. That's what the end of a shoelace is called but I never hear it being used.”

-orangeheatt

“Swell. It has such a endearing charm to it.”
"’Mmm this chicken is swell!’”
"’I had a swell time with you last night’"

-fallencabanel

These words may have fallen out of fashion in much of the world, but there’s no reason we can’t bring them back. ​

Want to "know" more?

Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.

Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again.

We don't talk about Bruno... and all of the other crazies in the family.

Maybe that is why that song struck such a chord... we can all relate to family secrets and family crazy.

Even though every generation has gotten a little more open and willing to discuss trauma, we still have a long way to go.

There is something to be said for not airing out all of the dirty laundry.

Everybody doesn't have to know private business.

Keep reading... Show less
People Share Which Survival Tips Could Actually Get You Killed
Photo by Andreas Wagner on Unsplash

For the most part, survival tips have been taught to us from a young age. We know to call 911 if there's an emergency and to put pressure on a bleeding wound. Boy Scouts know to be always prepared. Hikers know to conserve water, campers know how to build a fire, and anyone who spends a great deal of time outdoors knows how to locate shelter.

However, those skills are pretty basic. If you get into real trouble, you'll need more specific survival skills in order to get yourself out of trouble.

Some people can give you survival tips that can mean the difference between life and death. Others may give you tips that seem to make sense, but will probably only lead to death. It can be a great skill to learn the difference.

That's probably the thought process that led Redditor scarredforlife164 to ask:

"What "survival tips" would probably get you killed?"
Keep reading... Show less
People Break Down Which Products You Should Always Buy Brand New
Pop & Zebra on Unsplash

There are certain things you should not be skimpy about when it comes time to buy them. For example: toiletries. Why in the world would you want to use somebody else's toothbrush? A used toothbrush, we should underscore.

You'd run away screaming if you saw a used one sitting on a shelf at Goodwill, wouldn't you? Of course you would. You would immediately go to the pharmacy and pick up a brand new one, like a smart person.

Keep reading... Show less
People Imagine How They'd React If Someone Offered Them $50K For Their Pet
Ron Fung/Unsplash

I've got a decent amount of animals - some fish, turtles, dogs, etc. - but out of all of them, Optimus Prime is definitely *my* pet.

He's kind of a jerk to everyone else, but a with me he's a the biggest bestest beefaroni boy.

That is an outright lie, this dog is awfully behaved and taught himself how to open doors so he stays letting mosquitos in the house and air conditioning all of South Florida instead of just my living room. I just have a soft spot for him.

But here's the thing - soft spot or not, if someone offered me $50k for this dog, my reaction wouldn't be horror because I just love my "shmoopies" and even can't imagine. I'm not that privileged.

Keep reading... Show less