Saturday, August 14, 2010

Squalor


The word squalor is interesting. It can refer to a physical condition, a mixture of misery and dirt, or to a moral condition, a mixture of ignorance and insensitivity. Its predecessor was the Latin verb squalere: to be rough, scaly, clotted, covered with filth or weeds, or cracked and parched.

Some book or film reviews have tossed around the word squalorology, the supposed science of studying squalor. The adjective squalid refers to something foul, repulsive, and loathsome. It has partners in the noun squalidity and the rare verb to squalidize.

Squall has four different meanings and origins, most of them obscure and not at all connected to squalor. It can be an abusive term for an insignificant person, a loud and shrill cry, a sudden storm, or a squishy or marshy piece of ground.

Neither is there a connection to squalus or squaloid, words based on a Latin word for shark.


SIDEBAR: Squalor Victoria


Available from McFarland & Co.: Word Parts Dictionary, 2nd edition


Check out Mike's program-based books here:
Arbutus Press
or at Amazon.com


Listen to Mike’s program in real time every Tuesday morning, 9:00 - 10:00 a.m. EST, by going to wtcmradio.com and clicking on Listen Now.

There is a collection of podcasts. Go to wtcmradio.com and click on Podcasts. Scroll down The Ron Jolly Show to find the Words to the Wise audio button.


Visit The Senior Corner at seniors.tcnet.org

Labels:

0 Comments:

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home

Dona Sheehan's prints