This blog is for everyone who uses words.

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

Monday, 9 September 2019

Spot the Frippet: loot.

In informal speech loot is anything particularly desirable that someone has brought home, even if it happens to have been paid for honestly. This loot may come from a clothes shop or a supermarket (but not if it's grey knickers or sliced bread or bleach or anything dull like that).

Loot must in some sense sparkle.

Most loot, however, is ill-gained. He's got plenty of loot only technically means that he's got lots of money, because there's a tasty tang of dishonesty about the expression which makes a salve for the feelings of the hard-up and the envious.

If you would like to see something more definitely dodgy then countries have always had a habit of looting stuff whenever they can; a lot of loot is a product of empire, war, trade, or an assumption of superiority.

There's probably something viewable in a museum near you.

Spot the Frippet: loot. Strangely, although the Saxons, Vikings, and Cromwells were notable for their looting and pillaging of England, the word loot itself is much more recent. It comes from the Hindu word lūt. 

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