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From Afterwit To Zemblanity: 100 Endangered Words Brought Back To Life
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From Afterwit To Zemblanity: 100 Endangered Words Brought Back To Life

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3.97  ·  Rating details ·  76 Ratings  ·  13 Reviews
When a word perfectly captures a human truth, humans respond to it in the same way that they respond to a beautiful melody. They smile. They nod their heads. They tell others of their discovery. So says Simon Hertnon in his introduction to Endangered Words, and after wrapping your tongue around the lexical rarities he offers up tohis readers, you'll have to agree Hertnon p ...more
Kindle Edition
Published (first published January 1st 2008)
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Jessica
Feb 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: language, non-fiction
Fantabulous read! A more in depth review to follow.

"Ambrosial": Divinely fragrant, exceptionally pleasing to taste or smell, celestial or ethereal.

"Antepenultimate": The last but two or before the next to last.

"Bleezed": Scottish word meaning affected in the eyes by alcoholic excitement, in other words, a synonym for drunk.

"Caliginous": Misty, dim, murky, obscure, dark, literally and figuratively.

"Chiaroscuro": Representation in terms of light and shade without regard or use of color; also descr
...more
rongying
May 20, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Like how the author gives a brief explanation of how he likes the word, so I get a feeling like how each word could have its different nuances and how beautiful words are in expressing things or feelings that are just so hard to grasp.
Knute Snortum
Dec 05, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What a fun book for those who love rare words and their etymologies (origins). Simon Hertnon goes through 100 rare words, choosing his favorites, and explains them is detail. Two of these words I had heard of "in the wild": zaftig (pleasingly plump) and yoctosecond (tiny fraction of a second).

Hertnon makes a case for using each word and shows a quotation and usage. His explanations often get quite personal -- he refers often to his family -- and sometimes even preachy, but these connections hel
...more
Leia
Mar 27, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The words Hertnon chose were good--very interesting, mostly useful, covering a somewhat wide variety of topics. The problems? He used the "why I like this word" section to go on anti-technological, anti-capitalism soapbox divagations (one of the words that can be found in the book), and the "word alive" section to tell an oddly disjointed story about the adventures of an urban power couple.

I would recommend this book with the caution that the reader must wade through more than half the contents
...more
Meaghan
Feb 21, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
More than just a dictionary, this book puts forth obscure-to-obsolete words, defines them and explains what makes them cool and why they should be more common. Of the hundred words, I only knew two -- "zaftig" and "philtrum" before I read the book, which I think is slightly impressive since my vocabulary is huge.

Writers and all those interested in words and language would find this worth their while.
Brian
Jan 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing
A fun read. The version I read was a released as "Endangered Words: A Collection of Rare Gems for Book Lovers," released in 2009. I love reading about obscure words, and this was enjoyable and light ...
Erik
Jan 01, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: language
Pretty good read. The author's story at the end of each word didn't add anything but the rest was interesting. You'll probably never use the majority of these words (several are really awkward) but it's fun to know they're out there.
Cynda
I enjoyed this dictionary. Informative & Playful. As an upon-a-time Englist and History major, I recognized words from academic writings and writing appropriated by academicians. I enjoyed the book.
H. Anne Stoj
Jul 27, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: research, non-fiction
Oh so many fantastic words that I'd now like to find a use for. I love all of the origin and usage nonsense. Particularly where you can find an example in literature.
Annie
Fascinating so far... even know some of the words! Will make a point of using some of them. Fav so far is antepenultimate
Ruben
Aug 30, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book changed my life and continues to change my life. Thank whoever you thank for people that spend there time putting collections like this together.
MT Bostick
Mar 06, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Enjoyed it very much. Will come in handy for throwing in that oddball word for the offbeat character in my story.
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