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Dec 28, 2020
This week’s theme
Words to describe people

This week’s words
bounder
toplofty
worrywart
airling
altricial

Previous week’s theme
Words made with combining forms
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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

A caddie is not necessarily a cad, even though caddie is the source of the word cad. A caddie is not necessarily a young man either, even though it came from the word cadet. A cadet came from Latin capitellum (small head). In this instance, we can say it’s true as a young man would generally have a smaller head.

A lot can, and does, happen as a word travels through time and morphs into another. The moral of the story is that, while it’s good to know a word’s ancestry, a word is not obligated to be what its mom or dad was. A word is its own thing, let it be. Don’t tie it to its ancestry and insist that it continue to be what its heritage dictates.

That said, this week let’s look at words to describe people.

bounder

PRONUNCIATION:
(BAUN-duhr)

MEANING:
noun: An ill-bred, vulgar man.

ETYMOLOGY:
From bound (to leap or jump), from French bondir (to bounce), from Latin bombitare (to hum), from Latin bombus (humming), from Greek bombos (booming, humming). Earliest documented use: 1842.

USAGE:
“Bad manners, shoddy behavior toward women, gambling debts, cheating at cards, drunkenness, and despicable behavior in general, gave a man a bad reputation, earned him the names of blackguard, bounder, cad, and worse.”
Barbara Taylor Bradford; The Heir; St. Martin’s Press; 2007.

“‘You bounder, you.’ She leaped off her horse and ran for him. ‘I knew you’d come!’ Stanhope laughed. ‘I take great exception to being called a bounder, madam. I have not yet reached that lofty status,’ he said, and greeted her enthusiastic hug with one of his own.”
Julia London; The Scoundrel and the Debutante; HQN Books; 2015.

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

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
Anyone can be passionate, but it takes real lovers to be silly. -Rose Franken, author and playwright (28 Dec 1895-1988)

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