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#124146 - 02/29/04 11:24 AM termagant
While "rooting around" in Carolyn's Corner, I found a discussion of eponyms. It was news to me that "termagant"
is an eponym.
NOUN: A quarrelsome, scolding woman; a shrew.
ADJECTIVE: Shrewish; scolding.
ETYMOLOGY: From Middle English Termagaunt, imaginary Muslim deity portrayed as a violent and overbearing character in medieval mystery plays, alteration of Tervagant, from Old French.
I can't remember how I got the impression that it was
applied primarily to females, which would be a distortion.
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