Word of the Day : December 17, 2015

unclubbable

play
adjective un-KLUB-uh-bul

Definition

: having or showing a disinclination for social activity : unsociable

Did You Know?

The word unclubbable dates to the late 1770s, a time when lexicographer Samuel Johnson was still riding a wave of fame in the wake of the publication of his 1755 A Dictionary of the English Language. Johnson himself likely coined unclubbable. Earliest evidence of the word in use is from a 1778 entry in author Fanny Burney's diary, in which she quotes Johnson as using the word to describe a friend. Burney herself may have coined the unflattering descriptor's antonym: in a 1781 diary entry, she describes Johnson himself as clubbable—an adjective that has stuck to him ever since. For Johnson, a person's clubbability was likely determined by how well the person might do in a very particular club: "The Club"—later known as "The Literary Club"—established by Johnson and the artist Joshua Reynolds in 1764.


Examples

However fascinating her research is, the professor is decidedly unclubbable and not likely to make a good dinner party guest.

"Journalists are always fun on screen. This is because journalists are such fun in real life. Gossipy and unclubbable, they make the best company." — Rachel Cooke, The New Statesman, 25 July 2011



Name That Antonym

Unscramble the letters to create an antonym of unclubbable: RESOGIUAGR.

VIEW THE ANSWER

Podcast


More Words of the Day

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!