misterpolly has looked up 0 words, created 9 lists, listed 125 words, written 176 comments, added 0 tags, and loved 0 words.

Comments by misterpolly

  • Do you ken John Peel?

    February 28, 2008

  • "Would you like some more dream whip?" the actress asked the bishop.

    February 19, 2008

  • Though not the official symbol of the Irish Republic (the Harp) a very popular symbol. Legend has it that St. Patrick used the shamrock with its three leaves on one stalk to illustrate the mystery of the Holy Trinity when he was converting the natives to Christianity.

    February 19, 2008

  • Great list! I love 'em all, except for "verismo" which produced some of the worst rubbish ever to come out of Italy.

    February 14, 2008

  • Not only a beautiful meaning, also a beautiful sound and fascinating look (io io o). A poet could not but be gay in such a jocund company.

    February 14, 2008

  • Italian uses this (opera lirica) simply to mean what we call opera. "Opera" in Italian is an artistic creation of any kind (opus).

    February 14, 2008

  • Double stopping - playing two notes on a violin (or the like) on two adjacent strings.

    February 14, 2008

  • Ah! Nostalgia is not what it used to be!

    February 14, 2008

  • A sort of modern-day Neanderthal!

    February 14, 2008

  • A white-knuckle ride - for example: a ride on a roller coaster at the fairground.

    February 14, 2008

  • Richard Dawkins (he of "The Selfish Gene" and "The God Delusion") says much the same thing, though in gentler tone.

    February 14, 2008

  • non compos mentis

    February 8, 2008

  • Too much garlic in their cuisine!

    February 8, 2008

  • in seculo seculorum

    February 8, 2008

  • Keep it up - this is a useful one.
    Verb. sat. sap.

    February 8, 2008

  • Great list. Have you had a pint in all of them? I like a pub called the "Doctor Syntax".

    February 8, 2008

  • To sleep, perchance to dream. Aye, there's the rub!
    Do you wake up again from this one?

    February 8, 2008

  • A scornful expression coined for the lower classes by the ladies of Cheltenham Ladies' School in England. From CHeltenham AVerage.

    February 7, 2008

  • A small space in typography, just a bit longer than an "en".

    February 5, 2008

  • So what you get would be a preposition and what you do would be a preponement?

    February 5, 2008

  • I know lots of people I'd like to involve in this "sport"! Where can I buy a giant hollow ball? (I'll find the steep hill.)

    February 5, 2008

  • Nowt so queer as fowk.

    February 5, 2008

  • Italian for brothel. Now commonly used in Italy to mean:
    either a lot of something
    or a mess.
    Same can be said of its synonym "casino" (not casinò).

    February 5, 2008

  • Ah! Isn't it always?

    February 5, 2008

  • An old-fashioned Spike Milligan type of word. It is a quickie behind the gasworks.

    February 5, 2008

  • They are not long, the weeping and the laughter,
    Love and desire and hate:
    I think they have no portion in us after
    We pass the gate.

    They are not long, the days of wine and roses:
    Out of a misty dream
    Our path emerges for a while, then closes
    Within a dream.
    Ernest Dowson (1900) Vitae summa brevis spem nos vetat incohare longam

    A classier version of "Beer and skittles"

    January 31, 2008

  • A close relative is "infommercial" = a TV commercial spot purporting to give information.

    January 30, 2008

  • Calling Ralph on the big white phone.

    January 30, 2008

  • Have you got "Tom, Dick and Harry"?
    In Italy they are "Tizio,Caio and Sempronio".
    "Ready, steady, go!"
    "The good, the bad and the ugly."

    January 29, 2008

  • The monkey eats sprouts and leaves.

    January 29, 2008

  • Ah! Too late for regrets. I'm a gonner 'ere!

    January 29, 2008

  • Let sleeping bags lie.

    January 29, 2008

  • I love these chains! Is the stain a human stain removed by something, or is this a person who removes stains?

    January 29, 2008

  • Go together like a horse and carriage (sings).

    January 29, 2008

  • Nice list!
    Heads you win, tails I lose.

    January 28, 2008

  • See also "whisky" (=uisge beatha = water of life).

    January 28, 2008

  • Hoi polloi!

    January 28, 2008

  • I think you do very well to concentrate your sense of verbal disgust on a few well-chosen words. There are few that I hate more than your "impact" as verb. Maybe if we all concentrated very hard on hating the same word for a day we could help it to disappear in shame!

    January 28, 2008

  • Pussy Galore.

    January 27, 2008

  • Tatties and neeps. Down and out. Over and out.

    January 27, 2008

  • Don't understand this one! Is it a ménage à trois or a very small zoo?

    January 27, 2008

  • Always pronounced in its short version - can be written "forecastle" and is part of a ship.

    January 27, 2008

  • A position of a fielder in cricket and one of many with funny names. See also "short leg".

    January 27, 2008

  • Spiffing idea, actually, palooka. Well done that man/girl

    January 22, 2008

  • An Italian obsession. The worst thing you can do is make a "brutta figura" = cut a bad figure means embarrass yourself either by your lack of dress sense or, more generally, by doing/saying something stupid.
    The opposite is "bella figura".

    January 22, 2008

  • Right. So how do I get to eat a king cake in the other 11 months of the year.
    Would look better if you spelt it "comestible".

    January 22, 2008

  • - the commoner garden thrush

    January 21, 2008

  • kd b rly usfl tks a mill

    January 21, 2008

  • A Good Thing when you can get other religions to admit that they've got it wrong and yours has got it right.

    January 21, 2008

  • An interesting new turn in German idiom, coined by the Italian football manager Giovanni Trapattoni a few years ago when he managed Bayern Muenchen. Trapattoni is also considered a grand master of his own language with passion usually getting the better of syntax.

    January 16, 2008

  • "It's miasma," he said breathlessly.

    January 14, 2008

  • Now that is a question!

    January 14, 2008

  • Absinthe makes the tart grow fonder.

    January 11, 2008

  • Both a type of soup using eggs (beaten into the liquid) and grated parmesan cheese, and a type of ice cream veined with chocolate.

    January 11, 2008

  • Metonym does not require the use of place names. It means using a word which denotes an object associated with another concept. "The crown" = the King/Queen/Monarchy is an example. "A pen" could be a writer and "a sail" be used for a ship.

    January 10, 2008

  • What's source (sic) for the goose is sauce (sic) for the gander.(sick)

    January 9, 2008

  • and all these years I've been thinking it was a railwaymen's strike in Germany!

    January 9, 2008

  • Really spinquerish!

    January 9, 2008

  • Costs a fortune. Smells like old socks. Tastes really good grated on risotto.

    January 9, 2008

  • Fun list for those who know German and French. A nice Italian "falso amico" is "morbido" = soft (morboso = morbid).
    A friend who worked for Lever Bros. tells me that they tried (unsuccessfully) to market a deodorant spray in Germany with the unhappy name of "Body Mist". A little homework might have saved them a lot of money - not even a free gift would have helped.

    January 9, 2008

  • Beautifully expressive!
    Has anybody else come across the expression"New York Second" - again a fraction of a second, defined as the time it takes the man in the car behind yours to sound his horn when the traffic lights turn green and you haven't reacted.

    January 9, 2008

  • Many thanks Meleeman - I have added them to this list.

    January 9, 2008

  • Just across the Irish Sea from the town of Blackpool in Lancashire.

    January 8, 2008

  • I think it sounds offal!

    January 8, 2008

  • Do you think a person who plays gooseberry should be called a gooseberry fool?

    January 8, 2008

  • A Monday dish when leftovers from Sunday's meal are fried up again in butter. Ah!...

    January 8, 2008

  • a.k.a. dead fly biscuits
    I wonder what Garibaldi did to deserve this!

    January 8, 2008

  • A very useful word and one that seems to be making a comeback. It works especially well with an adjectival function (sibling jealousy/rivalry). A bit unusual in the plural ("I have three siblings") where the speaker seems to be trying to hide something. Other European languages deal with this in different ways: in Italian your brothers and sisters are all "fratelli" (male gender still dominates) but in German they are "Geschwister" which sounds more feminine.

    January 8, 2008

  • Splendid list! I fell for it hook, line and sinker.

    December 28, 2007

  • Little dumplings made of mashed potato and flour. Can be served with sauces as for pasta. Should be written gnocchi (the aitch produces a hard 'k' sound as opposed to a soft 'ch').

    December 28, 2007

  • Used in Italian (palinsesto) simply to mean the programming of TV shows.

    December 28, 2007

  • Where you can eat well in Italy at a lower price than you would find at a "ristorante". If the car park is full of lorries then you know the food is good. The person who runs it should be called a "trattore".

    December 28, 2007

  • As in "He came in short pants"?

    December 28, 2007

  • Cf. serenade

    December 28, 2007

  • Ah! Makes me think about "salt and vinegar" (steak pudding and mushy peas...)

    December 28, 2007

  • Thanks Mollusque. I like your list, too!

    December 28, 2007

  • Holmes first appeared in A Study in Scarlet - he and his sidekick must have faded by 1893.

    December 28, 2007

  • An extravagent (sic) variation on extravagance.

    December 27, 2007

  • Effect suffered by protagonists of Joyce's Dubliners. Supposed to help them get over the paralysis inflicted by their dull lives in what Joyce sees as a dull city. Never seems to work.

    December 27, 2007

  • Hi there, Norrell. See I'm not the only one enjoying His Dark Materials.

    December 27, 2007

  • Dare to be a Daniel!

    December 27, 2007

  • Also: "At the end of one's tether" = exasperated to the limit of one's endurance.

    December 27, 2007

  • Could this be what English calls "demimonde"?

    December 27, 2007

  • Now ain't that quaint. When I was a kid/nipper we used to go to the pictures. Now we are grown up we go to the cinema, but sooner or later we'll all end up at the movies.

    December 27, 2007

  • Beautiful word (ear worm). Used, if I understand correctly, to denote phrases of highly melodic music that you can't get out of your head all day.

    December 27, 2007

  • Also written "backsheesh" and "baksheesh" - money given as a tip (bribe), present or alms. From Persian.

    December 27, 2007

  • Just the lady, not the ladies'.

    December 27, 2007

  • If you've managed to wait all this time (has the poor thing got a birth certificate?) why not wait a few years and ask him to choose for himself?
    I would go for Pangloss.

    December 27, 2007

  • From Lytham St Annes - a coastal area of three towns (Lytham, Ansdell, St Annes) on the Irish Sea between Liverpool and Blackpool.
    One grown on the sand...

    December 27, 2007

  • Delightful! Mutton dressed as lamb.

    December 27, 2007

  • Orca miseria!

    December 27, 2007

  • I hate to say it but I find this indigestible.

    December 27, 2007

  • Depends on the individual. My Weltanschauung does not envisage annexing Poland etc.

    December 27, 2007

  • Used by Brecht in his theatre. The effect of "alienation" seeks to destroy the theatrical illusion and keep the spectator aware that he is watching a dramatic (and didactic) work and should not become emotionally involved in it.

    December 27, 2007

  • Short list! Finnished?

    December 27, 2007

  • "Sent to Coventry" = ostracised. Has anyone got any idea about why Coventry is afforded this unhappy connotation? I would send people to places like Stoke-on-Trent or Slough.

    December 27, 2007

  • It warms the cockles of my heart!

    December 27, 2007

  • Said to be the diminutive of Walter - though I've no idea who the poor Walter was. I have a delightful children's book called "Where's Wally?" full of very busy pictures where you have to find a little Wally.

    December 27, 2007

  • Great list!

    December 27, 2007

  • Your spelling is idiosyncratic. This word is "idiosyncrasy".

    December 27, 2007

  • It could take donkey's years to complete this list.

    December 25, 2007

  • Sandgrown'un (one who grew up in Lytham (Lancashire) on the coast.

    December 25, 2007

  • No flies on you, Bilby!

    December 25, 2007

  • As opposed to chest singing (which produces lower notes).

    December 24, 2007

  • This word looks so good. How many words have we got with double double u's?

    December 24, 2007

  • Even song will draw non-believers into churches.

    December 24, 2007

  • Just a shade uglier than beautification as a word, and as a process where you would have to start with something that is not ugly whereas to beautify you'd start with something not beautiful.

    December 24, 2007

  • Great idea!

    December 24, 2007

  • Add any one of the above and you go pasta hundred.

    December 24, 2007

  • This type of pasta comes from the Bologna region - famously "red" (communist) and anti-clerical. I don't think they use the same name in the Vatican.

    December 24, 2007

  • Makes a great creamy sauce with a hot-spicy taste; perfect for roast beef and Yorkshire pudding.

    December 24, 2007

  • The material used to make jeans (and other garments). From the French Coton de Nimes.

    December 22, 2007

  • If you count up the presents given on the Twelve Days of Christmas you reach a total of 364 (one for every day of the year but one)!

    December 22, 2007

  • Used to describe a picnic - alfresco lunch. Compare "aldesko" for those who eat their sandwiches in the office.

    December 22, 2007

  • Hi Michaelchang. I think 'expand' sounds just right in the kitchen. I wouldn't fancy eating eggs crement though. Would it be indelicate to suggest that extacy should be written Eggs Stacy (or even ecstasy)?

    December 21, 2007

  • Be careful, it could be hobbit-forming

    December 21, 2007

  • Anus horribilis. Long live the apostrophe.

    December 21, 2007

  • Is this a ne'er-do-well? Or maybe a fat man in ancient garb?

    December 21, 2007

  • Foul play was suspected by the detective (or by the referee/umpire).

    December 21, 2007

  • Beam me up,Scottie

    December 21, 2007

  • So who is this Al guy who seems to have had a hand in almost every academic publication I've ever read?

    December 21, 2007

  • 249 is a lot of favourites to have! How do you find time to use or even remember them? Watch out - an analyst could tell you more about yourself than you know by reading a list like this.
    P.S. What's wrong with 'hedgehog'?

    December 21, 2007

  • nice

    December 21, 2007

  • No offence meant and none taken, to be sure. Just names that sound nice or less nice and seem to hold a meaning.

    December 21, 2007

  • "Say wine to wine and bread to bread" is its Italian equivalent - note the bias of a gastronomically-obsessed culture.

    December 20, 2007

  • Never met a girl like this! Is Belcher her surname or her occupation?

    December 20, 2007

  • I know how to pronounce 'agnostic' with the 'gn' that subjectively I find unpleasant, but do you pronounce the initial 'g' of 'gnostic'?

    December 20, 2007

  • And just imagine having to admit you live there! What are you? A Bognorit? A Bognorian?

    December 20, 2007

  • My pleasure reesetee. My wife is a "southpaw" and I'm always scouring shops to find left-handed cups and glasses and things. She's very understanding and tells me it's all right even if I can't find any.

    December 20, 2007

  • Nice one!

    December 20, 2007

  • You clearly have a very catholic (small c) weltanschauung.

    December 20, 2007

  • So nice. Something we might all wish for, and much nicer than its Italian version "natura morta" (dead nature).

    December 20, 2007

  • Also a useful phrase when you're in a Chinese restaurant in France.

    December 20, 2007

  • "Hold off. Unhand me, greybeard loon" - Once again Coleridge is the man. Unnerving, eh? A man can be unmanned.

    December 20, 2007

  • Named after the town where it is (wrongly) thought to be made. Nice sound though ...gorgon.
    "James, set loose the gorgonzola."

    December 19, 2007

  • Beautiful word! I remember it from Coleridge's Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner:

    He holds him with his skinny hand,
    "There was a ship," quoth he.
    "Hold off! unhand me, grey-beard loon!"
    Eftsoons his hand dropt he.

    December 19, 2007

  • But our language loves these redundant adverbs - sit down, lie down, fall down etc. which fill that anxious gap when we don't say what we sit on, lie on, fall into etc.

    December 19, 2007

  • The fish is probably more useful than it seems - has no one ever brought you a piano tuner by mistake?

    December 19, 2007

  • This tells its own story - there's no such thing as a free lunch (gift).

    December 18, 2007

  • Great list!
    "To tell the honest truth" is like waving a big flag to announce that you're just about to tell a whopper.

    December 18, 2007

  • Nice one! A place where you can make a deposit. It reminds me of a euphemism (?) for vomiting - "calling Ralph on the big white phone".

    December 18, 2007

  • Yes, so short as to be practically ignaudible.

    December 18, 2007

  • Prostate with laughter.

    December 18, 2007

  • Yesterme, yesteryou, yesterday (Stevie Wonder)
    où sont les neiges d'antan?

    December 18, 2007

  • I have encountered it used in the sense of examples of exaggerated fastidiousness in stylistic questions, like refusing to use a preposition to end a sentence with or to boldly attack split infinitives.

    December 18, 2007

  • I'll come straight out with it - so you can correct me. This isn't strait as in the strait and narrow, is it?
    I'm in dire straits - please let me know.

    December 18, 2007

  • Presumably a group of people linked by a common language. Why does it have to be in German? German words always sound so heart-achingly, mind-bendingly philosophical.

    December 18, 2007

  • I am a great fan of "phatic communion" - conversational exchanges with almost no meaning ("Nice weather for this time of the year!") just to show that you care enough to say something.

    December 18, 2007

  • Found also as "shrieve" in Coleridge's Rime of the Ancient Mariner:
    `O shrieve me, shrieve me, holy man !'
    The Hermit crossed his brow.
    `Say quick,' quoth he, `I bid thee say--
    What manner of man art thou ?'

    Shrove Tuesday - the day before Ash Wednesday (before the Lenten period)

    December 18, 2007

  • And no less mysterious than it is in English. It does, however, sound much sexier in French - "Would you like a bit of pamplemousse?" as the actress said to the bishop.

    December 17, 2007

  • Sadly debased to include things like sales literature, technical literature and more or less anything you can get printed that isn't literature. Makes my blood boil literally.

    December 14, 2007

  • Rien ne va plus!

    December 14, 2007

  • When I was a little boy I was often naughty (sighs) now I find it much more difficult.

    December 14, 2007

  • Also a piece of unexpected good luck, like winning money in a lottery or inheriting.

    December 14, 2007

  • b) a newspaper article best read tomorrow

    December 14, 2007

  • Better half a loaf today than no loaf tomorrow?

    December 14, 2007

  • I didn't know this one but was struck by its similarity to the Italian word "acquaragia" which is a solvent (basically turpentine) capable of dissolving paints and varnishes. The -ragia here comes from the Greek -rhagia meaning to break (cf. haemorrhage)

    December 14, 2007

  • Would love to know what else it means!

    December 12, 2007

  • But nobody noticed as all the customers were legless by midnight.

    December 12, 2007

  • Magnificent!

    December 12, 2007

  • Though I fear the Pope doesn't appeal much to them.

    December 12, 2007

  • I suppose the man who eats piranhas was quite happy about this; he would have found himself in an aquarium.
    The hyphen is an on-the-verge-of-extinction form.
    "Visiting relatives can be tiresome" and "Visiting-relatives can be tiresome" are both true enough.

    December 12, 2007

  • "Tired and emotional" is an nice euphemism used by a journalist to describe some politician dead drunk at a public event

    December 11, 2007

  • Help me! I thought that loons and quines were simply boys and girls somewhere in Scotland. Remember reading them on toilet doors in a pub.

    December 11, 2007

  • What a lovely word! I'm pleased to discover what it is. It is used by Coleridge in Kubla Khan: "For he on honewdew hath fed / And drunk the milk of paradise."

    December 11, 2007

  • The British Consulate?

    December 11, 2007

  • Its Italian equivalent "pasticcio" is also a great sounder. It can be a mess/trouble, the musical composition and a dish made up of whatever is available (left-overs)

    December 11, 2007

  • An anagram of "unique diet" which may also cause it.

    December 10, 2007

  • Just imagine what we'd be eating if the Duke of Wellington had invented meat between two slices of bread and not the Earl of Sandwich!
    Ever been on a sandwich course? Cookery for beginners.

    December 8, 2007

  • What have grapes got to do with it?

    December 8, 2007

  • I found my thrill on Blueberry Hill
    On Blueberry Hill, when I found you
    My heart stood still on Blueberry Hill
    and lingered until
    my dreams came true.
    a.k.a. bilberry in British English and Whinberry in Northern England

    December 8, 2007

  • Off I go rather shamefaced to my doctor! Must be more careful when I choose my friends.

    December 8, 2007

  • Sounds like having a good time on a Saturday night! Started life as a pirate flag - plain red - "le joli rouge", before the skull and crossbones took over.

    December 8, 2007

  • I like friendly fire (killed by...) in the same category as Military Intelligence, intelligent bombs.

    December 7, 2007

  • Firstable - coined by one of my (Italian) students of English. Read first of all.

    December 7, 2007

  • I wish I'd posted this one!

    December 7, 2007

  • gormful
    wonderful
    wonderless
    disgruntled
    gruntled
    disconcerted
    concerted?

    December 7, 2007

Comments for misterpolly

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • Thank you for the kind comments!

    December 12, 2007