As a writer, I love words. But I also know that this isn’t the case for everyone. Just today I was writing and I had the opportunity to use the word “juxtaposition” in a sentence only to be asked the meaning later on by the client I was completing the piece for. And frankly, that’s no problem! I love teaching people new things, especially when it comes to language. Therefore, I decided it might be fun to discuss some great words in the English language that we don’t use nearly enough.

I feel that everyone benefits when people have the chance to expand their vocabulary and learn something new. With that thought in mind, I compiled a list of 10 words that I personally feel are pretty interesting and unique. If you have ever been a fan of the word-a-day calendars, this blog post is for you.

  1. Discombobulate: v., upset, confuse.
  2. Plethora: n., excess, superfluity.
  3. Juxtaposition: n., the act or an instance of placing two or more things side by side; also, the state of being so placed.
  4. Serendipity: n., luck that takes the form of finding valuable or pleasant things that are not looked for.
  5. Shenanigan: n., 1. A devious trick used especially for an underhand purpose; 2. a.: tricky or questionable practices of conduct— usually used in plural (shenanigans); b.: high-spirited or mischievous activity—usually used in plural (shenanigans).
  6. Flabbergast, v., to overwhelm with shock, surprise, or wonder.
  7. Defenestration, n., 1. a throwing of a person or thing out of a window; 2. a usually swift dismissal or expulsion (as from a political party or office).
  8. Soliloquy, n., 1. the act of talking to oneself; 2. a dramatic monologue that represents a series of unspoken reflections.
  9. Ubiquitous, adj., existing or being everywhere at the same time; constantly encountered, widespread.
  10. Oxymoron, n., a combination of contradictory or incongruous words (as cruel kindness); broadly, something (as a concept) that is made up of contradictory or incongruous elements.

Now, I challenge you to make it a point of using one or even all of these words either in your everyday speech, in an email or even in a post on Facebook or Twitter. And if you do, the team at Grammar Chic wants to know about it! Tell us on Twitter @GrammarChicInc or respond to this post and let us know how you used your great new vocabulary skills!

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