Monday, January 31, 2005

Forgotten English

Because I was given an abominable cat calendar for Christmas, I was forced to buy myself a calendar more to my liking. I chose a word-a-day calendar featuring words that fell out of use at least 100 years ago. I love it!

Here are some of my favorites from January, complete with definitions and my own annotations. A prize to anyone who can use three or more in one sentence!

swillking: having so much liquor in one’s stomach that it is swillking around.

Rozanne’s remarks: I’d like to see this word resurrected as a noun. “Dean Martin was a swill king among men.” And, no need to be sexist. There could be swill queens as well. I coronate Jenna Bush!

flesh tailor: a surgeon

Rozanne’s remarks: Simultaneously creepy and elegant. Jeremy Irons could play a flesh tailor.

clyster: an enema, such as tepid water or gruel, induced into the rectum to produce evacuation of its contents...[or] for supplying nourishment when the teeth are closed in tetanus.

Rozanne’s remarks: The either/or aspect of the clyster is highly revolting. Surely, no one would use it for the first purpose and then reuse it for the second purpose? There’s sort of that implication in the definition it seems to me.

spatherdab: chatterer, gossip, scandal-monger; a woman who goes from house to house dispensing news.

Rozanne’s remarks: Not an extinct species. I know several of these, and some of them are men.

liversick: sick at heart

Rozanne’s remarks: I hate actual quivering, raw, real liver of all varieties, but for some inexplicable reason I’ve always liked it when characters in old British novels or plays make comments like, “I’m feeling a bit liverish.” or “I’ve got a dreadful chill on my liver!” It's never been clear to me what they are talking about, but I find it charming all the same. And now I can add liversick to my collection of delightful liver-based terms and phrases.

5 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

After the party, while my stomach was swilking, that spatherdab Rita told the dashing flesh tailor all about my clyster.

How's that?

Denise
And So It Goes

9:23 PM  
Blogger thequeen said...

this is what I came up with.
The liversick flesh tailor, gave himself a clyster for swilking, his wife the spatherdab that she was ran off to spread the news.

12:30 AM  
Blogger Cagey said...

That flesh tailor is such a spatherdab when his liquor is swillking that he is worse than a clyster and boy, does it makes me liversick!

6:59 AM  
Blogger Sharon said...

The liversick flesh tailor wandered into the surgery suite that was filled with spathdab assistants, of which two had had early morning clysters due to swilking the previous evening.

7:51 AM  
Blogger Rozanne said...

Wow! Everyone used at least four of the words! I'm so impressed. I couldn't even think of a way to use three.

To claim your prize, e-mail me your snail mail address (if you feel comfortable doing that), and I'll send you a little something (I can send it to "Occupant" if you don't want to divulge your real name).

e-mail: rozanne@partlycloudy.com

4:14 PM  

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