from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A long word.
- adj. Given to or characterized by the use of long words.
- adj. Long and ponderous; polysyllabic.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A long word.
- n. A person who uses long words.
- adj. long; polysyllabic.
- adj. Pertaining to or given to the use of overly long words.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- Containing or measuring a foot and a half: as, a sesquipedalian pygmy: often humorously said of long words, in translation of Horace's sesquipedalia verba (words a foot and a half long).
- Addicted to the use of long words.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- adj. given to the overuse of long words
- adj. (of words) long and ponderous; having many syllables
- n. a very long word (a foot and a half long)
"Clarence Thomas, please spell the word sesquipedalian and then use it in a form of a question."
Let his obituary read, "Douglas Martin, a newspaperman who once got the word" sesquipedalian "onto the front page of the New York Times ...."
From the time the moderator gives the word, let's say it's "sesquipedalian," until your progeny very slowly spells it correctly, doesn't it seem a lifetime?
Professor Edgworth of All Souls, according to Robert Graves, tended towards this kind of sesquipedalian speech.
That makes one more sesquipedalian on the internet.
Or, perhaps it is a sign that I am sesquipedalian at best and pendantic at worst.
I prefer to characterize myself as a sesquipedalian, but I fear that such a characterization is a sham crafted by a hubristic pendant.
The first hypothesis to be explored was proposed by no less influential a political observer than columnist George Will, the bow-tied, sesquipedalian voice of American conservatism.
William F. Buckley, Jr. specialized in sesquipedalian derision.
Thanks for the sesquipedalian endorsement of "meh" and the internet.
Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.