You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘Uncertain’ tag.

Gradually persuade someone to do something by being nice or making promises to them. French “cajoler.” Uncertain origin.


The hard shell on the outside of some animals such as a crab, lobster or turtle. Spanish “carapacho”=upper shell of a tortoise. Uncertain origin, possibly “caparazon”=horse’s body armor < Latin “capara”= a hood.

A fool or simpleton; a stupid person. Possibly variation of “nodcock.” Uncertain origin.

Describes a person who dresses smartly and fashionably. Uncertain origin, perhaps related to “neat.”

British slang for a rich or upper-class person. Perhaps from “tuft”=the gold tassel on a titled Oxford/Cambridge graduate’s cap.

Something that causes fear or anxiety; an evil spirit. Uncertain origin ?Welsh “bwgan bo”=the devil.

Mythical creature that causes problems on aircraft. Uncertain origin but from the 1940’s and possibly alternation of “goblin.”

Bad or unpleasant; filthy or dirty. Uncertain origin. ? Old French “nastre”=low social status < “villanastre”=ignoble, infamous.

Weak, cowardly, ineffectual person. Uncertain origin but probably from “whimper”=to whine, cry < onomatopoeia – the sound of sobbing.

Most suited to a set of conditions; most healthy. Uncertain origin, poss. Old English “fitt”=strong (but only one example found).

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