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August 17, 2011

Word of the Day

  • toplofty
  • audio pronunciation
  • \TAHP-lawf-tee\
  • DEFINITION

adjective

: very superior in air or attitude
  • EXAMPLES

Our dinner guest was interesting but a bit toplofty as she recounted tales of her adventures abroad for us.

"He was being enormously toplofty, of course, trying to frighten her. And half succeeding." -- From Mary Balogh's 2011 novel More Than a Mistress

  • DID YOU KNOW?

How many words do we need to describe those who seem to think they're better than the rest of us? By the 19th century we already had "arrogant," "haughty," and "supercilious," but there was apparently need for more because by mid-century the language had garnered two others: "toplofty" and its variant "toploftical." The source of these is likely the phrase "top loft," which refers to the highest story of a building. Neither is common, but both are available to you should their synonyms prove too boring or obvious.

Test Your Memory: What recent Word of the Day can mean "an exact copy"? The answer is ...

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