Word of the Day 


euphemism  
noun: the substitution of an agreeable or inoffensive expression for one that may offend or suggest something unpleasant; also : the expression so substituted 

Examples:

Aunt Helen would never say that someone had “died”; she preferred to communicate the unpleasant news with euphemisms like “passed on.” 
“Jane Grigson is sometimes described as ‘the food writer’s food writer,’ which is probably a euphemism for ‘the food writer all other food writers would secretly like to be.’ I’m sure I’m not alone in the wide-eyed admiration and green-eyed envy with which I read her work.” — Felicity Cloake, The New Statesman, July 9, 2015

Did you know?

Euphemism derives from the Greek euphemos, which means “auspicious, sounding good.” The first part of that root is the Greek prefix eu-, meaning “good.” The second part is phēmē, a Greek word for “speech” that is itself a derivative of the verb phanai, meaning “to speak.” Among the numerous linguistic cousins of euphemism on the eu- side of the family are eulogy, euphoria, and euthanasia; on the phanai side, its kin include prophet and aphasia (loss of the power to understand words).

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s