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Linguistic Curiosity...

Anybody else out there still use the word "hence" on a regular basis?
What's your favorite obscure/obsolete word?



( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
Apr. 13th, 2012 05:38 pm (UTC)

I use "hence" and "whence". Perhaps not regularly, but correctly ("from hence" is redundant).

I use "shall" where most people these days use "will" in its place.

Apr. 13th, 2012 07:03 pm (UTC)
"Shall" is in real trouble. I rarely use it myself.
Ngram plot for Shall
Apr. 13th, 2012 05:53 pm (UTC)
I use "hence" a lot and I adore "whence." Probably the most archaic thing I say is actually "mayn't." (Generally in an exchange with Steve: "You can't do that!" "Yes I can, watch!" "Okay, but you mayn't do that!" *grin*)
Apr. 13th, 2012 06:57 pm (UTC)
I say "hence" now and then.

I realize you're talking about spoken words, but I'll add that in the Google Books corpus, its popularity has been declining slowly since 1800. It still appears in about four words of every 100,000, so it's not that rare in prose.

Ngram for Hence since 1800

I'm fond of "splendid," which has gone out of style somewhat. Its popularity plummetted after 1920 and now it's around five words per million.
Ngram for Splendid since 1800
Apr. 13th, 2012 08:00 pm (UTC)
I use hence, and hie, and shan't. And vexed.
Apr. 13th, 2012 08:29 pm (UTC)
I use "hence" as well, and sometimes "mayhap". Also, in occasional (friendly) insult exchanges with my sisters, "trollop".
Apr. 13th, 2012 08:31 pm (UTC)
I use "albiet" a lot in writing and speaking, but I don't see it in use much recent. Such a nice conjunction to go to waste.
Apr. 13th, 2012 08:53 pm (UTC)
I like albeit too. Hence isn't in my normal word set but I may have to start including it.
Apr. 13th, 2012 08:51 pm (UTC)
I use hence a fair amount, and shan't more often than not.

Whence...hmmm....once in a while.
Apr. 13th, 2012 09:11 pm (UTC)
I used the word fallacy in a discussion with Ian today. He broke down in giggles for about 5 minutes. Being a 23 year old guy, he went the wrong path on figuring what it meant. As mentioned hes a 23 year old dude, fallacy, phallic. Do they sound the same to you?
Apr. 13th, 2012 09:14 pm (UTC)
Funny you should mention that particular word because I used it in an email last night. I'm pretty sure the recipient even knows what it means - at least the reply wasn't all, "Huh?"
Apr. 14th, 2012 01:13 am (UTC)
I use hence when it is called for. I try to use shall correctly. Perhaps it is a comment on my life, but I often say alas.
Apr. 14th, 2012 07:11 am (UTC)
One of my favorite words I rarely hear is eschew. It's particularly good if you wrinkle up your nose when you say it.
Apr. 18th, 2012 01:31 am (UTC)
Once - and only once I told a group of students that they "warmed the cockles of my heart..."

mayhem erupted.

On a similar but not quite as volatile note: I will tell my students to "Get ye hence, ye mighty villains..." which is a quote from an old madrigal.
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )