Monday smile – Perchers, slug-a-beds and sillytonians

Dominic Watt, senior lecturer at the University of York, UK, and his team of researchers have recently published a list of strange English words that had almost disappeared from use.

Watt was quoted as saying “We’ve identified lost words that are both interesting and thought-provoking, in the hope of helping people re-engage with language of old”.

My favourites were:

  • percher – a person who aspires to a higher rank or status; an ambitious or self-assertive person
  • slug-a-bed – one who lies long in bed through laziness
  • sillytonian – a silly or gullible person, one considered as belonging to a notional sect of such people.

According to the BBC, researchers grouped the words into three categories: post-truth (deception); appearance, personality and behaviour; and emotions. You can find the full list on the Sky News website.

It seems that linguists and an interest in words can hit the headlines after all! 😉

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Hat tip to Madalena for sending me on this trail as a result of the the #dotard frenzy.

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