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Last Updated on September 3, 2018

24 Old English Words You Should Start Using Again

24 Old English Words You Should Start Using Again

Language changes over time; words and phrases come and go. In many cases, there is a good reason for words leaving our vocabulary.

I am certainly grateful that modern sewer systems mean there is no longer a need for the term Gardyloo – a warning call before chamber pots were poured out of windows onto the streets below.

Other old English words, however, still have perfectly valid meanings in our modern world and really need to be brought back, if only for the pleasure of saying them.

Here are 24 old English words and slang terms that are fun to say, still useful, and should never have left us in the first place:

1. Bedward

Exactly as it sounds, bedward means heading for bed. Who doesn’t like heading bedward after a hard day?

2. Billingsgate

This one is a sneaky word; it sounds so very proper and yet it refers to abusive language and curse words.

3. Brabble

Do you ever brabble? To brabble is to argue loudly about matters of no importance.

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4. Crapulous

A most appropriate sounding word for the condition of feeling ill as a result of too much eating/drinking.

5. Elflock

Such a sweet word to describe hair that is tangled, as if it has been matted by elves.

    6. Erstwhile

    This very British sounding word refers to things that are not current, that belong to a former time, rather like the word itself.

    7. Expergefactor

    Something that wakes you up is an expergefactor. For most of us it’s our alarm clocks, but it could be anything from a chirping bird to a noisy neighbor.

    8. Fudgel

    Fudgel is the act of giving the impression you are working, when really you are doing nothing.

    9. Groke

    This means to stare intently at someone who is eating, in the hope that they will give you some. Watch any dog for a demonstration.

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      10. Grubble

      Grubble might sound like the name of a character from a fantasy novel but it does in fact mean to feel or grope around for something that you can’t see.

      11. Hugger-mugger

      What a fun way to describe secretive, or covert behavior.

      12. Hum durgeon

      An imaginary illness. Sounds more like an imaginary word. Have you ever suffered from hum durgeon?

      13. Jargogle

      This is a perfect word that should never have left our vocabulary, it means to confuse or jumble.

      14. Lanspresado

      It sounds like the name of a sparkling wine, but no, it means a person who arrives somewhere, having conveniently forgotten their wallet, or having some other complicated story to explain why they don’t have money with them.

      15. Mumpsimus

      Mumpsimums is an incorrect view on something that a person refuses to let go of.

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      16. Quagswag

      To shake something backwards and forwards is to quagswag, who knew?

      17. Rawgabbit

      We all know a few rawgabbits. A rawgabbit is a person who likes to gossip confidentially about matters that they know nothing about.

        18. Snollygoster

        I think we can all agree this is a fantastic sounding word. It means a person who has intelligence but no principles; a dangerous combination. Watch out for the snollygosters, they live amongst us.

        19. Snottor

        This old english term has the unlikely meaning of “wise.” Really?

        20. Trumpery

        Things that look good but are basically worthless. I said THINGS, not people.

        21. Uhtceare

        This means lying awake worrying before dawn. We all do this, we just didn’t know there was a word for it. Say it now, like this: oot-key-are-a.

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          22. Ultracrepidarian

          Similar to the rawgabbit, this person takes every opportunity to share their opinion about things they know nothing about. Social media is the perfect outlet for these people.

          23. Zwodder

          Being in a drowsy, fuzzy state, after a big night out perhaps?

          And finally, I broke the alphabetical listing to save my favorite till last…

          24. Cockalorum

          A small man with a big opinion of himself.

          Why not see how many of these you can work into a conversation today?

          Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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          Last Updated on January 18, 2019

          7 Ways To Deal With Negative People

          7 Ways To Deal With Negative People

          Some people will have a rain cloud hanging over them, no matter what the weather is outside. Their negative attitude is toxic to your own moods, and you probably feel like there is little you can do about it.

          But that couldn’t be farther from the truth.

          If you want to effectively deal with negative people and be a champion of positivity, then your best route is to take definite action through some of the steps below.

          1. Limit the time you spend with them.

          First, let’s get this out of the way. You can be more positive than a cartoon sponge, but even your enthusiasm has a chance of being afflicted by the constant negativity of a friend.

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          In fact, negativity has been proven to damage your health physically, making you vulnerable to high levels of stress and even cardiac disease. There’s no reason to get hurt because of someone else’s bad mood.

          Though this may be a little tricky depending on your situation, working to spend slightly less time around negative people will keep your own spirits from slipping as well.

          2. Speak up for yourself.

          Don’t just absorb the comments that you are being bombarded with, especially if they are about you. It’s wise to be quick to listen and slow to speak, but being too quiet can give the person the impression that you are accepting what’s being said.

          3. Don’t pretend that their behavior is “OK.”

          This is an easy trap to fall into. Point out to the person that their constant negativity isn’t a good thing. We don’t want to do this because it’s far easier to let someone sit in their woes, and we’d rather just stay out of it.

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          But if you want the best for this person, avoid giving the false impression that their negativity is normal.

          4. Don’t make their problems your problems.

          Though I consider empathy a gift, it can be a dangerous thing. When we hear the complaints of a friend or family member, we typically start to take on their burdens with them.

          This is a bad habit to get into, especially if this is a person who is almost exclusively negative. These types of people are prone to embellishing and altering a story in order to gain sympathy.

          Why else would they be sharing this with you?

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          5. Change the subject.

          When you suspect that a conversation is starting to take a turn for the negative, be a champion of positivity by changing the subject. Of course, you have to do this without ignoring what the other person said.

          Acknowledge their comment, but move the conversation forward before the euphoric pleasure gained from complaining takes hold of either of you.

          6. Talk about solutions, not problems.

          Sometimes, changing the subject isn’t an option if you want to deal with negative people, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still be positive.

          I know that when someone begins dumping complaints on me, I have a hard time knowing exactly what to say. The key is to measure your responses as solution-based.

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          You can do this by asking questions like, “Well, how could this be resolved?” or, “How do you think they feel about it?”

          Use discernment to find an appropriate response that will help your friend manage their perspectives.

          7. Leave them behind.

          Sadly, there are times when we have to move on without these friends, especially if you have exhausted your best efforts toward building a positive relationship.

          If this person is a family member, you can still have a functioning relationship with them, of course, but you may still have to limit the influence they have over your wellbeing.

          That being said, what are some steps you’ve taken to deal with negative people? Let us know in the comments.

          You may also want to read: How to Stop the Negative Spin of Thoughts, Emotions and Actions.

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