to "incent"

Arnold M. Zwicky zwicky at CSLI.STANFORD.EDU
Mon Dec 3 15:17:44 UTC 2007

On Dec 2, 2007, at 1:40 PM, Jon Lighter wrote:

> According to this list sponsored by _Vocabula_, to "incent" has
> broadened its semantic range to mean merely to "motivate":
>  This list is sure to give your blood pressure a quick boost.  For a
> number of reasons!

yes.  it's a big grab-bag of classics ("hopefully"), vogue words, non-
standard pronunciations and spellings, cringe words, etc.

the cringe words include: awkward, blog, chortle, corpuscule, dab,
dinghy, garage, ghastly, glad, luckily, moist, penis and vagina,
portion (also meal), pussy, scrotum, smear, smegma, snog, yummy.

our old friend "supposably" is in there.

quite a few odd suggestions for replacements -- e.g. "grace" instead
of "graciousness" (related to "gracious") and "thanks" instead of
"thankfulness" (related to "thankful").

i assume this is the work of Robert Hartwell Fiske, although no author
is identified for the list.  much of it is first-person, and much of
it is pronouncement from on high -- Fiske's usual style.

on the other hand, it might just be a compendium of nominations for
Worst Words that people have sent in, so that different people are
speaking in different entries.


The American Dialect Society -

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