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Looking for a word

Posted by James Briggs on March 27, 2003

In Reply to: Looking for a word posted by ESC on March 27, 2003

: : : : : The concept of 'gaining pleasure from the misfortune of others' is covered by a single word in German - 'Schadenfreude'. There's a request in today's Times to come up with an English single-word equivalent. I thought the wordsmiths among you out there would like to take up the challenge! How about it?

: : : : "Sadism" and "dispathy" don't quite cut it, I suppose.

: : : How about Acerbovitism, from the L*tin acerbus, meaning sour, and vitis meaning a grapevine?

: : Of course, if someone's Gr**k is better than mine (which would hardly be difficult), something similar to the above could probably be done with a -philia construct.

: This is probably too simple, but, gloat?

: Main Entry: 1gloat
: Pronunciation: 'glOt
: Function: intransitive verb
: Etymology: probably of Scandinavian origin; akin to Old Norse glotta to grin scornfully
: Date: 1676
: 1 obsolete : to look or glance admiringly or amorously
: 2 : to observe or think about something with triumphant and often malicious satisfaction, gratification, or delight
: From Merriam-Webster online.

Gloat - a fine suggestion. I'll let you all know what, if any, suggestions appear in the Times - they don't always get answers to their questions. A year or so ago I asked why the Engish speaking nations mainly use a decimal 'point', whereas most European countries use a decimal 'comma'. I never had a reply. Any ideas?