This blog is for everyone who uses words.

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

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Thing Not To Do Today: be pusillanimous.

Pusillanimous might not be the most elegant word in the English language, but it's useful because it takes a long time to say and so you can get a lot of feeling into it.


It means cowardly or lacking in determination. So those who by some miracle of genetic engineering are both chicken-hearted and lily-livered are prime examples of pusillanimity, especially if they also happen to have a yellow streak down their backs.

Do you know someone pusillanimous? Or, at least, do you know anyone who is acting in a pusillanimous way?

All right, then. I dare you to tell them. But do make sure they really are pusillanimous before you do, or else you might get yourself into really serious trouble.

File:Chicken March 2010-1.jpg
Photo by Alvesgaspar

Word To Use Today: pusillanimous, This word comes from the Latin pusillanimis from pusillus, weak, plus animus, spirit.


  1. A lovely old word.
    It's a good adjective for insults. I know of a person I would love to call a pusillanimous pipsqueak!

    1. Well, that'd have them quaking in their boots, Jingles. I think you should do it.
      'You're just a dirty rotten coward and a...and a...and a pusillanimous pipsqueak!'
      It would have to be one of the crowning moments of your life!