Friday, August 31, 2012


Meaning: an Egyptian word - a figurine of a dead person, buried with them to do their chores in the afterlife.

Usefulness: 1 (I might be confusing the word with the thing here, but I don't see why you should have to be dead to have an ushabti, and of course it makes a nice, subtle insult for the workplace*)

Logofascination: 3

Thursday, August 30, 2012


Meaning: to do with, or resembling, soot; dusky or dark.

Usefulness: 2

Logofascination: 1 (I like saying it aloud)

Wednesday, August 29, 2012


Meaning: a rhetorical term - a description so vivid, it as if the hearer/reader has seen an image.

Usefulness: 2

Logofascination: 2

Monday, August 27, 2012


Meaning: a little cupid (a putti), possibly cupids plural, but in Dickens' Our Mutual Friend, the name for Lady Tippins' little black book, or, really, ledger, from which she is "always booking a new lover, or striking out an old lover, or putting a lover in her black list, or promoting a lover to her blue list, or adding up her lovers, or otherwise posting her book." Methinks milady would've enjoyed Facebook, or accounting.

Usefulness: 3 (flippantly or seriously of contacts or Facebook: Let me consult my cupidon!)

Logofascination: 3

Friday, August 24, 2012


Meaning: used by Gerard Manley Hopkins to describe 'competent but uninspired poetry'. One can almost hear the sniff behind it. Coined from Mount Parnassus, sacred to Apollo and the muses, it is a poetic symbol for poets and poetry, and thus an appropriately over-used image with which to dismiss mere competence.

Usefulness: 2 (the work-insult bonus factor: use of this word is all about tone. I suggest the chutzpah of GM Hopkins, all of 19, describing quite a lot of Tennyson's writing as Parnassian.)

Logofascination: 3 (unless you're a big GMH fan)

Thursday, August 23, 2012


Meaning: Salient, or obvious - originally meant leaping, and then sticking out, and is, I think, slowly evolving from obvious into meaningful.  Invented by Sir Thomas Urquhart's contemporary, Sir Thomas Browne, whose words, while not nearly as stylish as Sir Urquhart's, seem to be more generally used.

Usefulness: 3

Logofascination: 3 (but only because it's etymologically leaping)

Wednesday, August 22, 2012


Meaning: to do with ropes. Originally relating to a funiculus, or little rope, which means we have the rather lovely plurals funiculi and funicles.

Usefulness: 4 (depending on your location, but I do love the sound of it)

Logofascination: 3

Tuesday, August 21, 2012


Meaning: "in the theories of Wilhelm Reich, a supposed excess sexual energy distributed throughout the universe and available for collection, storage, and further use". (I couldn't beat Wiktionary's summary, so I've used it).

Usefulness: 2 (of city bars on a Friday night)

Logofascination: 3 (not well known, but interesting mainly for its meaning)

Monday, August 20, 2012


Meaning: to do with river banks

Usefulness: 2-3 (depends where you live)

Logofascination: 3

Sunday, August 19, 2012


Definition: the science of fermentation, which, as we all know, reaches its highest form in brewing.

Usefulness: 2

Logofascination: 3 (Zymurgy doesn't sound like it'd be that well known, but it is the sort of word that is written up over bars.)

Saturday, August 18, 2012


Meaning: implicit faith in the works or views of others

Usefulness: 1 ("Fidimplicitary, my dear Watson" or "How fidimplicitary of you, my dear Watson!")

Logofascination: 1 (automatically assigned to anything invented by Sir Thomas)

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


Meaning: a stew, and hence any kind of hodge-podge

Usefulness: 2 (high applicability to work situations)

Logofascination: 1 (gaining special ranking because it sounds like Gallifrey.)

Tuesday, August 14, 2012


Meaning: nonsense, gobbledygook

Usefulness: 2 (can be used to describe meetings, lends itself to alliteration)

Logofascination: 1