WEST NEWBURY – Superintendent Justin Bartholomew and Principal Jonathan Seymour are pleased to share that 10 Pentucket Regional High School students have coined new words that have been accepted into an online dictionary.
Students in Leanne Villani’s Latin V class study the etymology of words, including engineering of new words, called neologisms. (A person who coins a new word is considered a “neologist.” The word stems from the French “néologisme.” Its French creator is unknown.)
Earlier this year students viewed a 2014 TedTalk by lexicographer Erin McKean, former editor-in-chief of American Dictionaries for Oxford University Press, who encouraged her audience to create new words to be better understood.
The students created words that were submitted to WordNik, McKean’s online dictionary:
- Caitlin Armao, “magisenssibous,” how a teacher feels about you based on preconceived notions of their feelings towards your sibling.
- Kate Drislane, “inexludivolous,” when an individual hates a sport/activity but would never quit since he or she has done it for too long.
- Yanni Kakouris, “subartor,” an under-qualified person lacking in particular skills.
- Trevor Kamuda, “dejucibimalphilial,” when you think a food is going to be gross but is actually good.
- Elizabeth Murphy, “semiocultaction,” the act of not fully making eye contact.
- Jackson Neumann, “inconscisultable,” Not knowing if someone is being sarcastic.
- Grace Pherson, “posthemercras,” the day after tomorrow.
- Julia Seeley, “infratrephobia, the fear of being seen as inferior to a sibling.
- Stratton Seymour, “ceacosequitor,” one who blindly follows/is unable to think for themselves.
- Owen Tedeschi, “dissesquipedusion,” the misuse of large words.
The District learned in late September that the students’ words had been accepted.
Students were thrilled and proud to be published neologists like William Shakespeare, who is credited with creating more than 1,700 words.
“Most important, this activity extended the learning outside of the classroom into the global community,” Villani said. “I also wanted students to appreciate how they can apply their knowledge of Latin to improve their use of English by becoming more empowered speakers, writers and readers.”