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Jan 13, 2022
This week’s theme
Birds

This week’s words
black swan
gowk
lame duck
henpeck
ostrichism

henpeck
“Gimme a look. No, no, no! The light is all wrong and it’s out of focus. And put that cigarette out, you know I just quit!”
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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

henpeck

PRONUNCIATION:
(HEN-pek)

MEANING:
verb tr.: To criticize, nag, pester, etc. in a persistent manner.

ETYMOLOGY:
The word hen has been used for a woman or a girl for a long time (1555). So has the verb peck for nagging (1641). Earliest documented use for the verb henpeck: 1677.

NOTES:
The word is often used in reference to a wife nagging her husband. A henpecked husband is one considered subservient to his wife and a chickenpecked parent is one nagged, harassed, or bullied by a child.

USAGE:
“The idea was to use law enforcement officers to henpeck some of the local troublemakers so they’d move along and know they’re being watched,’ David Gray said.”
Christina Jedra; Smith to Ask for Cameras on ‘Hot Spots’; Maryland Gazette (Glen Burnie); Oct 31, 2015.

“‘You don’t have anyone to henpeck at home, so you’re taking it out on me.’
‘How do you know I don’t have anyone to henpeck?’ Marybeth asked him flippantly. ‘I only said I wasn’t married. Now, are you going to behave or not?’”
Pamela Toth; A Warming Trend; Silhouette Books; 1992.

See more usage examples of henpeck in Vocabulary.com’s dictionary.

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
To move freely you must be deeply rooted. -Bella Lewitzky, dancer (13 Jan 1916-2004)

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