This blog is for everyone who uses words.

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

Sunday, 5 October 2014

Sunday Rest: mangulate. Word Mostly Not To Use Today.

Mangulate is down in the dictionary as Australian slang for  mangle.

If this were the whole story then the added syllable is really rather nasty, both wasting the breath and making the speaker sound bitter and twisted.

On the other hand, mangulate also means to bend out of shape (there's probably a tinge of manipulate in there, I should imagine) and so, whether bitter or not, no one can argue that twisted isn't appropriate.

File:Damaged road sign in Stockholm.jpg
Photo: Anders Sandberg

So, mangulate. It's certainly not pretty, but I think this one just might come in handy for special occasions when I'm too appalled and angry to care.

Well, it beats swearing.

Word Mostly Not To Use Today: mangulate. I can't find any definitive derivation, but my guess is that the extra syllable has been added to mangle partly as an intensive, and partly on the models of manipulate and strangle/strangulate.

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