Now entering their 13th year, Wayne State University’s Word Warriors series promotes words especially worthy of retrieval from the linguistic cellar. Its list includes public submissions from around the world. (This is our 6th installment.)
This year, the Word Warriors have not foozled about but rather compiled a list of memorable — some might say grandiloquent — words to be revived and reused in speech and writing. Far from a collection of otiose nouns and verbs, these selections will add color and depth to conversations.
“Each year, I’m surprised by the variety of the submissions we receive from around the world,” said Chris Williams, assistant director of editorial services for Wayne State Marketing and Communications, and head of the Word Warriors program. “Our Word Warriors once again provided a batch of words that make our language richer. The English language is so versatile and unique, and we’ve ended up with another list of 10 great words.”
And now, the Word Warriors’ 2022 list of eminently useful words that should be brought back to enrich our language:
Cacoethes – An irresistible urge to do something inadvisable. My commitment to weight loss was derailed by my cacoethes to eat the entire pizza.
Collywobbles – Intense anxiety or nervousness, especially with stomach queasiness. While he was confident in rehearsal, performing before a crowd sent him running to the restroom with a case of the collywobbles
Desiderata – Things that are required or wanted.The committee met to discuss the various desiderata of a successful village fete.
Elflock – Hair matted as if by elves.She woke up in the morning with her hair knotted in elflocks.
Foozle – To fumble, bungle or make a mess of. I thought that I had the skills to complete that exercise, but instead I completely foozled the whole thing.
Fudgel – To pretend to work when in reality one is not doing anything.He fudgeled at his desk, a comic book hidden inside his history text.
Grandiloquent – Pompous or extravagant in language, style, or manner, especially in a way that is intended to impress.His grandiloquent affectations, meant to endear him to the elite, instead made him an object of ridicule.
Malapert – Boldly disrespectful to a person of higher standing. He had skill, but his malapert behavior put him at odds with executives and prohibited any chance of promotion
Otiose – Serving no practical purpose or result.He asked for suggestions but was met by the otiose ramblings of his disinterested peers.
Scurryfunge – To hastily tidy a house. Upon receiving the call that their parents were due home two hours earlier than planned, the kids scurryfunged in an attempt to hide evidence of their weekend party.
See the complete archive (from 2010 to the present) here: https://wordwarriors.wayne.edu/list