Pronounced: more-bih-DET-suh, noun

Note: I tried to parse this word to guess the meaning, and was wrong

Yesterday’s word

The word skirl is related to bagpipes; it means

  • to emit the high shrill tone of the chanter; also, to give forth music
  • to play [music, if you’ll forgive the word] on the bagpipe

Not every musical instrument has its very own verb — but then again, there is nothing quite like a bagpipe. Some people classify the sound made by a bagpipe as ‘music’; others say it is more of a shriek than music… and that is the origin of the word: skirl was first used to shrieking maids or winds, etc. Since it was first used (presumably disparagingly) of bagpipes, the meaning has shifted and it is no longer an offensive description of bagpipe playing.

First used

Scottish poet Robert Sempill first applied the word to bagpipes in the mid-1600s.

Published by Richard

Christian, lover-of-knowledge, Texan, and other things.

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