Great words

Last week, the New Yorker had a contest to vote one word off the English-language island. The winning (or losing) word was “slacks,” chosen mainly for its current lack of use. Other heavily-favored nominations included “moist,” “literally,” “awesome,” and “epic.” I submitted “dialoguing.” It got me thinking about words I love. Here are a few.

Crepuscular—a friend thinks this word sounds obscene, which is also a terrific word when you think about its origins in Greek tragedy. All of the sex, violence and murder took place off stage, “ob skene.”


Keen (like the British use it, not the lamentation for the dead or the 50s equivalent of awesome).

Schadenfreude—great word, less great meaning.

Ennui–which is almost onomatopoetic when you think about it.




What are your favorites? Leave a sentence in the comments section that includes your pick.


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