This blog is for everyone who uses words.

The ordinary-sized words are for everyone, but the big ones are especially for children.

Friday, 28 March 2014

Word To Use Today: arctophile.

The Word Den is delighted to have a Guest Post today by none other than Eddie Foster, who writes the  fascinating and funny word blog, Lexicolatry.
Eddie lives in Ireland. He's been a Private Detective. He can speak Romanian. He loves words. And teddy bears.
How cool can you get?
Do you love teddy bears?
If you do, you’re an arctophile, a rather lovely word derived from the Greek arktos (bear) and philos (loving, dear).
While it might not sound like a cuddly word for a person that’s fond of teddies, for a grown man like me it’s perfect as it conveys a certain respectability and reverence for something that, apparently, I should have grown out of by now.
Piffle, I say, and as a proud arctophile I present to you a picture of my two dearest arctophilic possessions: my copy of Who Wants an Old Teddy Bear? by Ginnie Hoffman, a book my father used to read to me at bedtime (and now a book I read to my own daughter when it’s time for her to slip away to Bedfordshire), and Montgomery, a dashingly handsome bear that my Mum gave to me, a bear that I still find impossible to pass by without giving him a great big squeeze.
Teddy bear, Arctophile, Cuddly toy, Cuddly
Word To Use Today: arctophile. This is a person that collects or is very fond of teddy bears. I’m an arctophile, and I suspect you probably are too.
Mulțumesc, Eddie (That's Romanian for thank you. I hope.). I love real bears - brown bears, grizzly bears, Paddington bear, black bears, polar bears, Rupert bear, sun bears, Pooh Bear - any bear as long as it isn't going around frightening or hurting people.
Unfortunately I've never been lucky enough to meet the right teddy bear for me. But you never know.


  1. Hey there Eddie!
    I'm a bear lover too - of the real and stuffed varieties.

    Unfortunately, I am unable to see the pictures of the book and Montgomery. I don't know if it's just my end, but I would love to see them!

    1. Oh dear. The picture comes out on my computer. I wonder what I can do? Shall do some research.

    2. I'm afraid I can't work out how to solve this problem, Jingles, but luckily for people who can't view it the photograph can be found in all its glory here:

    3. Yay! There he is! Thank you Sally : o )

    4. Ah, there's Montogomery! Thank you!
      He's wonderful, and has got lots more hugs left in him!

    5. I see Montgomery's a rather superior bear (from Harrods, no less) so perhaps a small curtsey and shake of the paw might be more appropriate.
      But no, He's definitely a hugger, isn't he.

  2. I can't see the pictures either but I'm on my mobile so it might be it. I'm not a lover to the point of earning such fancy name but my daughter is. She's hopeless and it is rare to go shoppimg and not coming back with a teddy bear she found irresistable. Last one ahe bought is as big as a fat 8 year old, she dresses him with her hoodies and he hogs almost half of her bedroom sofa. Makes me smile and I live in fear she'll never find such a great companion for her movie marathons... She's upgraded from Baby to Arctophile thanks to Eddie.

    1. Thanks very much for your comment. I hope I've fixed the invisible bear problem now, Teresa.
      My daughters never had such a huge bear as yours, but one day at a jumble sale we came across an almost life-sized lion. Plundar still sits on top of a wardrobe, where his paws come in useful for hanging up handbags.