I love words, old ones, new ones, made up ones. Jeffrey’s books deals with the most delicious mix of remarkable forgotten english words. I thought I would post my favourites, but that would be the whole book, so I have chosen a few at random. The best thing to do is buy the book. Have look at Jeffrey’s website for heaps more amazing words, books and a 2010 calender of vanishing vocabulary: http://www.forgottenenglish.com/ . But right now lets have a brief look at some of the wonderful bizarre old english.
miscomfrumple: To rumple, crease. If one female sits so close to another as to rumple or crease her dress by pressing or sitting upon it, she is said to miscomfrumple it.(Northhamptonshire (J.Wright)
yird-swine: A mysterious, dreaded sort of animal, called the yird swine, was believed to live in graveyards, burrowing among the dead bodies and devouring them.(Gregor)
Witch’s-stirrups: Matted locks in a horse’s mane. (Jackson)
ninny-broth: Popular name for coffee. (Nares)
I just love this one as I am a coffee addict…sorry…ninnybroth addict!
merry-go-sorry: A mixture of laughing and crying (R.lHunter)
pixilated: Led astray, as if by pixies; confused, bewildered, intoxicated (Mathews)
mobble: To dress grossly or inelegantly. (Walker)
thrunched: Very angry, despleased. (Mackay)
and last but not least…
offmagandy: The best and choicest of delicacies. Rich, stiff cream would be described as ‘real offmagandy.” (Darlington).
Jeffrey dedicates the collection to Lewis Carroll, who was inspired by antiquated English to imagine words like the wonderful “Jabberwocky,”
‘Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
All mimsy were the borogroves
And the mome raths outgrabe.
My contribution to such wonderful words:
I’m thrunched. I needed my offmagandy and ninnybroth however the restaurant owner looked at me, huffed loudly, looked down his hooked nose and sneered just one word ‘mobble’. How dare he. I held my head high and told him in no uncertain terms that he looked like witches stirrups or more so like a yard swine. I went on in the hautiest voice that I muster up from within that I had been miscomfrumpled on the way here.
He then suggested I have been pixilated. At that comment I slumped down in a merry go sorry state.
I know, I know, a dreadful piece and a cheek to put that up straight after Lewis Carroll…but that is the beauty of having ones own blog. Poetic licence or just plain ‘cos I can’, anyway, back to ‘The Word Museum’, you can see how delicious this book is and besides learning what ‘used to be’ one can have so much fun with it all as well.
That’s it from me on this subject…for now….signed rosie ‘gapesnest’ (see if you can find out what it means).