Word of the Day : July 3, 2014

misbegotten

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adjective miss-bih-GAH-tun

Definition

1 : unlawfully conceived : illegitimate

2 : having a disreputable or improper origin

3 : not worthy of respect or approval

Did You Know?

In the beginning, there was "bigietan," and "bigietan" begot "beyeten"; then in the days of Middle English "beyeten" begot "begeten," and from thence sprung "misbegotten." That description may be a bit flowery, but it accurately traces the path that led to "misbegotten." All of the Old English and Middle English ancestors listed above basically meant the same thing as the modern "beget"-that is, "to father" or "to produce as an effect or outgrowth." That linguistic line brought forth "misbegotten" by adding the prefix "mis-" (meaning "wrong," "bad," or "not") in the mid-1500s.


Examples

Many hoped that the newly-elected administration would focus on ending what they perceived to be a misbegotten war.

"The annals of medical history are strewn with wrongheaded theories, misbegotten paradigms and woefully ill-conceived treatments. U.S. physicians no longer prescribe heroin to children afflicted by coughs-common practice in 1912. Lobotomies, all the rage into the 1950s, too, are passé." - Chase Olivarius-Mcallister, The Durango Herald (Colorado), May 18, 2014



Test Your Memory

What former Word of the Day begins with "z" and is used to express astonishment or admiration especially in response to something sudden or speedy? The answer is …


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