• Karen Heckman Stork

Weird Words

Quote of the Day: Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought, and the thought has found words. Robert Frost


Today’s blog is about a favorite English-related subject of mine — unique, unusual words and their meaning. And many of my favorite such words are related to books and writing.


I enjoy learning new and unique words. I love to figure out how to pronounce them, how to use them in a sentence and what they mean. I’ve never seen a New York Times crossword puzzle, but I believe it must be rife with many such words and phrases. And I would love to hear from my readers about new words they enjoy using.


Now, let’s have a little English grammar lesson on word meaning. The first three words all contain “phile” which means “lover of.”


Thalassophile — Okay, anyone know the meaning of this word? I only heard it a few weeks ago on (where else) Facebook. I am one of these persons, and in my book I describe what it means to be a thalassophile. It means I am a lover of the sea/ocean. It was interesting that I could find this word described on various websites, but it is not included in any dictionary that I could find, and so I cannot assign it a place of origin.


Logophile is a word which comes from Greek origin. is another favorite of mine and is closely related to bibliophile. A bibliophile, as many of you probably know, is a lover of books, and logophile is a lover of the content of books — words and language.


Pluviophile — lover of rain; someone who finds joy and peace of mind during rainy days. Pluvial is from Latin and means pertaining to rain. I am a person who loves the sound of rain. Whenever it rains I long to take off my shoes and run out and dance in the rain. I did this once in my life with my grandkids, and it is a favorite memory.


Penulis is a word I recently learned from another writer, Marilyn Coffey, who uses the word to describe herself. It is a Malaysian word meaning “author, writer”. I like the sound of the word and it includes the word “pen”, a writing instrument.



What is one of your favorite “weird” words that most people don’t know? Post in comments.

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Karen Stork: Nebraska Writer
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