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Feb 14, 2018
This week’s theme
People who became verbs

This week’s words
adonize
bogart
hooverize
molochize
napoleonize

hooverize
“Food will win the war”
A poster by the US Food Administration (See more)
Image: National Archives

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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

hooverize

PRONUNCIATION:
(HOO-vuh-ryz)

MEANING:
verb tr., intr.: To be sparing in the use of something, especially food.

ETYMOLOGY:
After Herbert C. Hoover (1874-1964), who as the head of the US Food Administration during the WWI, encouraged citizens to eat less and save food for soldiers. Earliest documented use: 1917.

NOTES:
“To hooverize” is not the same as “to hoover”. The latter is a synonym of “to vacuum” (also used metaphorically for “to devour” or “to consume”). It’s the genericizing of the word Hoover, a popular brand name for vacuum cleaners. The word is mostly used around the UK. The brand is named after American industrialist William Henry Hoover (1849-1932).

USAGE:
“Read one wartime Valentine’s Day poem:
I can Hooverize on dinner
And on lights and fuel too
But I’ll never learn to Hooverize
When it comes to loving you.”
David Pietrusza; 1932: The Rise of Hitler and FDR; Lyons Press; 2015.

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
Patriotism is often an arbitrary veneration of real estate above principles. -George Jean Nathan, author and editor (14 Feb 1882-1958)

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