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Dulcid Duplicity

Before the first astute Fragments reader calls this to my attention (assuming the astutidity of said group)...

In the previous post, I apparently used a word that is not in any online dictionaries I could find and therefore perhaps not a real word at all. DULCID finds 163 hits on Google showing I am not the only person who seems to think this is a real word.

If anybody can help sort out this disconnect between usage and formal acceptance of this very nice, soothing, smooth-sounding word... please let the word-sleuths amongst us know about it.


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The word is "dulcet," which the dictionary defines as "pleasing to the ear, melodious, having a soothing and agreeble quality." Used to mean sweet to the taste. Comes from Middle English, from Old French from Latin, meaning sweet.

We also have dulcify, to make agreeable or gentle, molify.

I'm looking at the American Heritage Dictionary, 2nd College Edition. Did you not reach for paper? It's right above dull and just one step down from where "dulcid" would be. We can't throw the books out yet, I guess.

You know I remember that now, dulcet anglicized I guess to dulcid, or simply misspelled. Appears as "dulcid" in Fennegan's Wake, I see. Paper? You mean get up and walk across the room for a dictionary? Sheeesh!

Aha! Everyone should know a reference librarian. Thanks friend Tim for bailing me out here, as follows from the Oxford English Dictionary:

[A modification of dulcet, dulced, after words like rapid.] a. adj. Dulcet, sweet. b. n. A sweet substance.

1657 TOMLINSON Renou's Disp. 19 All dulcid things are agreeable to the Lungs. 1658 R. FRANCK North. Mem. (1821) 314 Some with honey and other dulcids have sweetly allured him. 1698 FRYER Acc. E. India & P. 182 Tartness..excellently qualified by a dulcid Sapor.

Apparently this form was in use two hundred years ago, which just makes me more certain than I was born in the wrong century.

... who are you calling astutid?

That would be "astuteness."
I was gonna say "duclet" too, but I got beat to it.

What's the use of a giant useless vocabulary if you can't embarass yourself with it from time to time, that's what I say!

Hey, better to spell a word the way it sounds and get it wrong than to pronounce it the way it looks and get it wrong.

But if it's good enough for Jim Joyce...

Agreed the word is dulcet. Hi mind if I link to your blog?

I think I read in Harper's somewhere that we all should have at least 12 lexicons of some form in our home.

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