Thursday, July 20, 2006

Slim's Word of the Day

gob·smacked
adj.
British slang. Utterly astounded, flabbergasted, shocked.
There are four reasons I can think of why this is an excellent word:
  1. It's British slang. British slang is always excellent.
  2. It incorporates the absolutely excellent word "gob," slang for mouth.
  3. It summons the excellent image of clapping one's hand to one's mouth in surprise.
  4. It just plain sounds excellent.
Go forth and gobsmack.

5 comments:

  1. I think that it is most like the metaphorical "bitch slapped", rather than slapping one's own hand on one's own mouth.

    It also is related to the word gobstopper, known as a huge piece of candy one presumes was developed to shut the child up.

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  2. love it.

    I think I'll try to implement it into my daily vocabulary.

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  3. fantastic word! Must try to work into daily conversation.....

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  4. Nik, you're probably right. Dictionary.com gives the 'clapped hand over mouth' etymology, but everything else I've seen describes it as analogous to the "What the fu..!" response of being suddenly and unexpectedly struck in the mouth.

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  5. Well said-- this is one of my favorite British expressions I've learned since moving across the pond. You hear it absolutely everywhere (in casual conversation, that is).

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