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Jul 3, 2020
This week’s theme
Back-formations

This week’s words
onymous
swashbuckle
zig
rort
couth

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Shirts and pants as metaphors
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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

couth

PRONUNCIATION:
(kooth)

MEANING:
adjective: Cultured; refined; sophisticated.
noun: Refinement; sophistication.

ETYMOLOGY:
Back-formation from uncouth, from Old English uncuth (unknown), from un- (not) + cuth (known), past participle of cunnan (to know, to be able). Ultimately from the Indo-European root gno- (to know), which also gave us know, recognize, acquaint, ignore, diagnosis, notice, normal, anagnorisis, prosopagnosia, agnosia , cognize, gnomon, kenning, and unco. Earliest documented use: 1896. Uncouth is from 1732.

USAGE:
“In public life, brassy, unclassy, light on couth. In private life, elegant home, antiques, Tiffany dinner service.”
Cindy Adams; You Can’t Find a Better Lady; New York Post; Sep 2, 2014.

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

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
A book must be an axe for the frozen sea inside of us. -Franz Kafka, novelist (3 Jul 1883-1924)

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