Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Moby Dick: Odd Words We Should Add to Our Vocabularies Today

While Moby Dick is widely acknowledged to be filled with wonderful words that are used today by the most erudite of people, it should also be acknowledged that the book is filled with odd words that should be re-inserted into our modern conversations. Here are a few of these I'd like to promote.

Bosky (pg. 29): forest-like

Scraggy (pg. 32): ragged, bare

Verdure (pg. 37): greenery

Cupidity (pg. 39): greed

Confabulations (pg. 52): conversations

Vitiated (pg. 55): impaired

Trump (pg. 61): a reliable or admirable person (Oh dear!)

Vesture (pg. 75): clothing

Crotchet (pg. 88): a perverse or unfounded belief or notion

Costermonger (pg. 94): a person who sells fruits and vegetables from a cart on the street (I wish we had more costermongers, by the way.)

Muster (pg. 100): assemble, gather

Palavering (pg. 104): talking

Quoggy (pg. 111): mushy, soft

Waggish (pg. 116): humorous, playful

Essayed (pg. 129): attempted

Carking (pg. 156): distressing, worrying

Malignity (pg. 176): malevolence

Gainsaid (pg. 208): denied

Celerity (pg. 215): speed, haste

Solicitudes (pg. 220): causes for anxiety or concern

Haply (pg. 225): by chance

Cozening (pg. 246): misleading, deceiving

Shindy (pg. 293): commotion, uproar

Nonce (pg. 334): time being (I like this simply because it is very close to my last name.)

Disport (pg. 387): take amusement

Rake (pg. 390): a libertine, a pleasure-seeker

Diddled (pg. 405): cheated, swindled

Ablutions (pg. 425): cleansing rituals

Twigging (pg. 429): observing

Larders (pg. 443): pantries

Prating (pg. 470): babbling

Lave (pg. 478): wash

Sup (pg. 484): eat

Feign (pg. 510): fain, gladly

Arrant (pg. 519): complete

Boon (pg. 524): favor, benefit

Avail (pg. 547): use

Weltering (pg. 563): surging

Do you like any of these? Any of these you find useful?

Wondrous Words Wednesday is a weekly meme where we share new (to us) words 
that we’ve encountered in our reading. 
If you want to play along, grab the button, 
write a post and come back and add your link to Mr. Linky at Bermuda Onion!


  1. There are so many great words on that list, I don't even know where to start. I love diddled, carking, and waggish. I don't think I'll be using trump though! lol

  2. Again, I admire your perseverance in noting all these words. I think bosky is very good, but I really like the similar-meaning of "tulgey wood" in the poem Jabberwocky. There's tulgey wood near the boat harbor of Kona on the Big Island, in my opinion.

    best... mae at

  3. What a lovely list. I read it out loud and used the words in sentences, and the effect was almost musical! Try it.


I hope you will leave a comment so I know you have visited. If you stop by my blog, I will always stop by yours.

Note: Disqus commenting is only available on the web version of the blog. Please switch to the web version if you are using a mobile device.