Thursday, 31 October 2013

Word of the day: pecksniffian

Quite randomly, a colleague decided that we should have a word of the day for today and that today's chosen word would be pecksniffian. The challenge is to use the word in a sentence, preferably one that is casually thrown into conversation or, even better, used in a meeting.

Not sure what (a) pecksniffian is? She provided us with this helpful information.

adjective: Pretending to have high moral principles; sanctimonious, hypocritical.

After Seth Pecksniff, a character in Charles Dickens's novel Martin Chuzzlewit. Earliest documented use: 1844.

Charles Dickens describes Pecksniff like this: "Some people likened him to a direction-post, which is always telling the way to a place, and never goes there."

"Dominique was in two minds about inviting the Thingammys to the party – Horace was a dear, but Mavis was a Pecksniffian old trout."
And so the discussion begin. Who do we know that is pecksniffian? Hyacinth Bucket would qualify, surely. Many (most?) politicians would also be pecksniffian. We tried out the word of the day in as many contexts as we could imagine but think it is going to take at least a few more days to a) remember how to say it correctly and b) remember to use it.

How about a Word of Every Few Days instead?

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