Kent found a website a few weeks ago that is right up my alley…the Compendium of Lost Words. It’s a compilation of “400 of the rarest modern English words – in fact, ones that have been entirely absent from the Internet, including all online dictionaries”. I enjoy odd words, as those of you who know me may have realized before, so maybe I should include an entry from it in each of my future blogs. Maybe not…but it is fun to see them. (And yes, they have two- and three-letter Scrabble words!) Here are some prime examples:
rendling, n (1784 -1784) — curdling or setting of cheese
Seeing the realization slowly dawn upon her was like witnessing the rendling of cheese.
pudify, v (1656 -1656) — to cause to be ashamed
Your remarks do not pudify me, for you are as guilty of such offenses as I am!
famigerate, v (1623 -1736) — to carry news from abroad
The bloggers famigerated about the conditions in the war-torn country.
jobler, n (1662 -1662) — one who does small jobs
We’ve found a great jobler who takes care of our repairs quickly and cheaply.
kexy, adj 1608 -1884) — dry, brittle, withered
The rustling of the kexy leaves alerted the campers to the bear’s presence.
welmish, adj (1688 -1688) — of a pale or sickly colour
Her welmish complexion was the first clue that she had become a full-blown addict.
woundikins, int (1836 -1836) — diminutive form of “wounds”; mild oath
He shouted, “Great woundikins!” upon striking his toe, much to their amusement.
citharize, v (1623 -1692) — to play the harp
If you plan to citharize, prepare to build up calluses on your fingers.
epalpebrate, adj (1884 -1884) — lacking eyebrows
If you don’t stop plucking, soon you’ll be epalpebrate!
In searching for images to go with the idea of lost words, I also found two other interesting sites.
An art gallery in the UK did an exhibition in 2009 all about lost words. Various artists chose an unused word and created a piece of art based on that word. You can see pictures of the exhibition at their site — some very beautiful artwork!
The blogger Sai Sriskandarajah intiated a computer program to recover all his deleted keystrokes, which he then turned into poetry.
Here’s looking at words in a different way — as artifacts, or as art. Lots of creativity possible here. Do me a favor — go find a new word in the Compendium of Lost Words and use it on some poor unsuspecting person.