It's always fun to learn new words and phrases, especially cool words about words! It's so easy to over look this amazing group of words, because we're so busy learning long and intricate words, idioms, and even slang. Rarely do we think about the group of words that define other words. If you're interested in learning these cool words about words, below are 7 of them that your inner logophile will love. Keep reading to find out what they are!
Definition: "To apply a new meaning or usage to an existing word." "Wordnap" is one of the funniest cool words about words out there! It was coined by Richard Lederer by putting together the words "word" and "kidnap"! An example of a wordnap would be to refer to a smile using the word "cheese." "Cheese" already refers to the edible cheese, but the person who coined the word "cheese" to mean "smile", that person wordnapped! Cool, huh?
Definition: "The destruction of the sense or value of a word" or "the willful distortion or depreciation of the original meaning of a word." That sounds worse than word "wordnap"! An example of verbicide is using the word "awfully" to mean "very," such as, "That woman was awfully rude!" Verbicide sounds like a crime, but it's not as bad as it seems. Many of us use words opposite or differently than they were meant to be used. Slang can be considered verbicide, and if you've ever used slang, you're guilty of verbicide!
Definition: "A person's name that matches its owner's occupation or character very well (either in fiction or reality)." I love this word, because it's amazingly cool! You could come up with all sorts of great examples: the gardener - Mrs. Rose Flowers; the zookeeper - Mr. Ani Mals; or the doctor - Mrs. Yu Ghet Bedder. The possibilities are endless! Aptronyms are fun to create. Personally, I think it's the coolest word out of the list.
Definition: "Inserting a word in the middle of another." Tmesis is another cool word about words! "Un-freaking-believable! Grandma started a-whole-nother batch of cookies!" Breaking up the word "unbelievable" and "another" by inserting "freaking" and "whole" are perfect examples of Tmesis. You think of one!
Definition: "The interchange of the initial letters of two words, usually as a slip of the tongue." There's a store called "Shoe Sensation" near my house, and almost every time I try to say the name of the store, I create a spoonerism. Try it! Say, "Shoe Sensation" 6 times aloud at a quick pace... At one point did you say "Soo Shenshation"?
Definition: "Describes a phone number where the numbers also spell out a word or phrase," such as 1-800-GO-FEDEX or 1-800-CALLSAM. I never knew this collection of numbers and letters even had a name!
7. Genericized Trademark
Definition: "A trademark or brand name which has become synonymous with a particular type of product or service, to the extent that it often replaces the formal term for the product or service in colloquial usage." I can think of a few genericized trademarks; Tupperware is one of them! No matter what brand of plastic storage containers I have, I always call it "Tupperware." It's so popular in my mind that every plastic container of its kind is called "Tupperware." Another example is "Band-Aid," which is owned by Johnson & Johnson, but it's so popular that any adhesive bandage will always and forever be called a Band-Aid in my book!
Learning language is always enjoyable for me, I hope you enjoyed learning a few new words about words too! Which of these words were your favorite? Can you think of any fun examples of the words on this list?