As an immigrant, I sometimes stumble upon words that I do not know. But what a fun was to find out that others did not know some words, too.
Lyn put together one of the most entertaining classses I have ever been to. Want to know if you know English? Try it right now.
Even if you do not know every one of the words, you will like thhis blog anyway
Brush up on your Rare and Amusing Insults - Amaze your friends, belittle your enemies with your knowledge of the English lauguage!
Definition: a boastful and self-important person; a strutting little fellow (Oh, Congress!)
Definition: a fawning subordinate; a suck-up
About the word: lickspittle keeps company with bootlicker ("someone who acts obsequiously").
Definition: an excessively faultfinding person
About the word: The original Smelfungus was a character in an 18th century novel. Smelfungus, a traveler, satirized the author of Travels through France and Italy, a hypercritical guidebook of that time.
Definition: an unprincipled but shrewd person (Oh, fer sure, it's Congress again!)
About the word: The story of its origin remains unknown, but snollygoster was first used in the nasty politics of 19th century America. One definition of the word dates to 1895, when a newspaper editor explained "a snollygoster is a fellow who wants office, regardless of party, platform or principles...."
Definition: ninny; simpleton, fool
About the word: The word ninny is probably a shortening and alteration of "an innocent" (with the "n" from "an" getting transferred to the noun) and "hammer" adds punch.
Definition: a stubborn person who insists on making an error in spite of being shown that it is wrong. (Bingo again! Congress!)
About the word: Supposedly, this insult originated with an illiterate priest who said mumpsimus rather than sumpsimus ("we have taken" in Latin) during mass. When he was corrected, the priest replied that he would not change his old mumpsimus for his critic's new sumpsimus. (They were hilarious back then right?)
Definition: an unmanly man; a mollycoddle (a pampered or effeminate boy or man)
About the word: Milksop literally means "bread soaked in milk." Chaucer was among the earliest to use milksop to describe an unmanly man (presumably one whose fiber had softened). By the way, the modern cousin of milksop, milquetoast, comes from Caspar Milquetoast, a timid cartoon character from the 1920s.
Definition: an awkward, gawky young man
About the word: Hobbledehoy rhymes with boy: that's an easy way to remember whom this 16th century term insults. Its origin is unknown, although theories about its ancestry include hobble and hob (a term for "a clownish lout").
Definition: shyster; a lawyer whose methods are underhanded or disreputable
About the word: The petti part of this word comes from petty, meaning "insignificant" (from the French petit, "small").
As for fogger, it once meant "lawyer" in English. According to one theory, it may come from "Fugger," the name of a successful family of 15th- and 16th-century German merchants and financiers. Germanic variations of "fugger" were used for the wealthy and avaricious, as well as for hucksters.
Definition: a foolish or absentminded person
I like to thank Merriam-Webster online for these suggestions!