27 Delightful Obsolete Words It’s High Time We Revived

Quit groaking me, you slubberdegullion.


Meaning: To silently watch someone while they are eating, hoping to be invited to join them.
Origin: Unknown
As in: It’s hard to enjoy your meal when the guy opposite is groaking you the whole time.


Meaning: To act in a secretive manner.
Origin: 1530s
As in: I’m sick of all these sneaky types, creeping around and hugger-muggering the whole time.

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Meaning: To feel ill because of excessive eating/drinking.
Origin: 1530s
As in: Blerg. The morning after St. Patrick’s Day. I feel crapulous.

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Meaning: Sullen. An alternative to grumpy.
Origin: 1720s
As in: I’m hungover, and I’ve got a ton of work to do. Think I’m allowed to be grumpish.

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Meaning: Freshly melted snow.
Origin: 1590s
As in: Yesterday we woke up to a perfect carpet of white, but now it’s just snowbroth. :-(

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Meaning: To confuse, bamboozle.
Origin: 1690s
As in: I don’t get string theory. It utterly jargogles my brain.

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Meaning: The sun’s warmth on a cold winter’s day.
Origin: 1620s
As in: Even in darkest December you sometimes get a moment of beautiful apricity.

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Meaning: To gossip, or talk idly.
Origin: 1600s
As in: I wish you’d quit twattling and get on with your work.


Meaning: Tangled hair, as if matted by elves.
Origin: 1590s
As in: Jeez, dude, look at the state of those elflocks — have you not heard of a comb?


Meaning: To have a paralyzing or mesmerizing effect on someone.
Origin: Early 17th century
As in: Don’t look into his eyes. He’s so charismatic, you’ll be gorgonized.


Meaning: A little man with a high opinion of himself.
Origin: 1710s
As in: He’s a boastful shortarse. Total cockalorum.

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Meaning: A good-looking person.
Origin: 1500s
As in: Alison Brie? Total snoutfair.


Meaning: Slang term for a fat person.
Origin: 1780s
As in: Time to go on a diet, I’m getting to be a right jollux.


Meaning: The shock one feels upon first plunging into cold water.
Origin: Scots, 1800s
As in: Those outdoor swimmers must have balls of steel to cope with that kind of curglaff.


Meaning: To argue loudly about something inconsequential.
Origin: 1530s
As in: I can’t stand Question Time, it always descends into brabbling.

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Meaning: An alternative to twilight.
Origin: Early 1600s
As in: London is at its most beautiful by twitter-light.

Photo by Totororo-roro Flickr: totororo-roro / Via deathandtaxesmag.com

Meaning: Walking while smoking a pipe.
Origin: 1820s
As in: I’m off for a post-lunch lunt, anyone care to join me?


Meaning: Stupid, imbecilic.
Origin: 1590s
As in: The Only Way Is Essex is a TV show for the terminally beef-witted.


Meaning: Wonderful and extraordinary.
Origin: 1810s
As in: The Breaking Bad finale was every bit as monsterful as I’d hoped.


Meaning: Having beautifully shaped buttocks.
Origin: 1640s
As in: I admire Beyoncé for her musical talent. The fact she is highly callipygian is neither here nor there.

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Meaning: To make drunk, intoxicate.
Origin: 1910s
As in: It’s never a good idea to operate heavy machinery while fuzzled.

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Meaning: A wooden puppet, controlled by strings.
Origin: 1850s
As in: The president has no real power, he is a mere quockerwodger.

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Meaning: The seemingly malevolent behaviour displayed by inanimate objects.
Origin: 1940s
As in: That water bottle looks like it wants to kill me. It exhibits resistentialism.

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Meaning: The fear of oblivion.
Origin: 1700s
As in: I’m terrified the world is about to end. I am lethophobic.

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Meaning: A slovenly, slobbering person.
Origin: 1650s
As in: Look at that sluberdegullion, sprawled on the sofa with his tongue lolling out.

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Meaning: A low rumbling sound produced by the bowels.
Origin: 1880s
As in: Nothing worse than audibly curmuring during a job interview.


Meaning: Heavy rain.
Origin: Early 1900s
As in: Christ, it’s absolutely lumming down.

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Luke Lewis is BuzzFeed's Head of European Growth and is based in London.
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