Odd Words (i)


Old English
dūstscēawung (f.) [noun.]

  • viewing or contemplation of dust.

Emilian
mustadûra [noun.]

  • the act of treading on grapes.

Spanish
desengaño (m.) [noun.]

  • realization of the truth, especially after a period of deceit.

Quechua
maywaq [noun.]

  • he who caresses.

Tongan
huhu [noun.]

  • breast; breasts; teat;
  • fork.

Tahitian
mania [adjective.]

  • (of the sea or weather) calm;
  • (figuratively) serene, tranquil, peaceful (state of mind).

Quechua
allpayay [verb.]

  • to become soil.

Swedish
hen [pronoun.]

  • (neologism) a personal pronoun of unspecified gender; an alternative to “hon” (she) or “han” (he).

German
Tante-Emma-Laden (m.) [noun.]

  • mom-and-pop grocery store, mom-and-pop convenience store.

Russian
шпионома́ния (špionománija) (f.) [noun.]

  • spy mania, spy fever (paranoia about spies, fearmongering about the threat of foreign spies).

Old Norse
hundrað (n.) [noun.]

  • a long hundred (120).

Finnish
rupsahtaa [verb.]

  • to lose one’s beauty or handsomeness, especially regarding the shape and firmness of body.

Catalan
esgatinyar-se [verb.]

  • to fight mutually using scratches, in the manner of cats;
  • (figuratively) to have a catfight.

Swedish
pekoral (f.) [noun.]

  • a text written in a grandiloquent or pompous style but lacking literary quality, thus making it seem overly pretentious or ridiculous.

Latin
arborēscō [verb.]

  • I become a tree.

Tok Pisin
long [preposition.]

  • used to mark spatial direct objects that something is oriented in the manner of, where English would use to, toward, into, or onto;
  • used to mark spatial direct objects that something is oriented in the location of, where English would use in, at, on, or near;
  • used to mark indirect objects, or direct objects of intransitive verbs, where English would use to;
  • used to mark spatial direct objects that something is oriented in the manner opposite of, extracted from, or away from, where English would use from or out of.

See other: Odd Words

The Rush of Language


‘Latin is the being, French the thought, Spanish the fire, Italian the air (I said ‘aether’ of course), Catalan the earth, and Portuguese the water.’

Nooteboom C. 1991. Het Volgende Verhaal [The Next Story] Amsterdam, The Netherlands: Uitgeverij De Arbeiderspers (1991) p. 28