Tuesday, 18 February 2014

A Logophile's List: Words to Fall in Love With

I love words, don't you? As a writer, it's a kind of given - but not always. I'm talking about real obsessive love here. The bordering on OCD kind.  As I see now, the logophile kind.

I love the look of words. I love the sound of them. I love the feel of words on the tongue, how some dance, while others fizz and dissolve, some click and clack, and some skip, hop and spill into a smile. And I love how all these aspects relate to the meaning of the words.  

I love spelling words. (When I was younger, I used to continuously split words into two halves and spell them out with my toes. Weird, I know. But I never got less than full marks on any spelling test! ) I love guessing words. I love learning about the etymology of words too. I love comparing words in a different language (I especially love every single foxtrotting French word!)  And I just love, LOVE finding the perfect word for the perfect sentiment - the instance that pushes the universe into perspective.

That's why I want to tell you about this blog: Otherwordly. It showcases all kinds of weird and wonderful words, from all different languages, (including Old Saxon English). Words that define vague states in black and white. Words that tether whimsical abstractions into the real world. Words that delight in nature's spectacles. Words that will make you stop and marvel at the power of language.

Anyway, here are some of my favourites, words that I feel are a necessity, not just a luxury, words that should exist in every language, in some form. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do:


Now, don't you feel as if you've seen the world anew? If words translate the world to us, then surely new words must shine a new light on our interpretation of it? We are forever discovering and re-discovering the world, why not language too? These words show just a glimpse of what language is capable of and its inherent alchemy.

If you like these selections, do check out the Otherwordly blog. It's also available on Facebook & Twitter. The words are also on the Writers Write Facebook page. (View them here)

~ Siobhán


  1. Ahhh I love this!!!! Who knew there were even words for some of these things?

    1. I know, they're so great aren't they! Magic.

  2. Hi, I don't see that you have "frou frou" -- it's the name of a musician and that's how I learned the word. It is of French origin, referring to the rustling sound silk makes: http://www.thefreedictionary.com/froufrou


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