homeabout kottke.orgarchives + tags

James Joyce invented words and they are awesome

posted by Susannah Breslin   Mar 19, 2015

james-joyce.jpg

James Joyce is the greatest writer the world has ever known. Arguably! He didn’t even bother confining himself to the known language. He created words of his own.

A few highlights from “17 Words Invented by James Joyce”:

Bababadalgharaghtakamminarronnkonnbronntonnerronntuonnthunnt-rovarrhounawnskawntoohoohoordenenthurnuk. This is Joyce’s most famous word creation. It’s from Finnegans Wake, and it’s supposed to sound like a thunderclap. Which it does. If you can figure out how to pronounce it.

Peloothered. This means you’re drunk. Someone calls you this in Ireland, and you know you’re blotto.

Smilesmirk. Girls on Instagram have basically perfected this one.

Update: Ryan Goodlett advises: “I’ve found after a handful of languages that Icelandic sounds the best.” Agreed! And Kevin Krebs suggests: “you’ll want to follow @FW_WOTD.” Michael Schwartz says: “You might want to try james Joyce or Kool Keith.” I got six out of ten. How embarrassing.

We Work Remotely