Pronounced: SMASH-mouth, adj

Notes: This is a borderline case… I was pretty close to the correct meaning – do you know it?

Yesterday’s word

The word shunpike, as a noun, means “a side road taken to avoid a toll road”. As a verb, it means “to travel on a side road”.

Background / Comments

This word is a “tosspot” word; such words are a combination of a verb and a noun. To be a tosspot word, there are two conditions: first, the verb must be first, and second, the noun is the object of the verb. Thus, “pickpocket” is a tosspot word because a pickpocket picks pockets, whereas “repairman” is not (he doesn’t repair men). Today’s word is the combination of “shun” and “turnpike” (an expressway; especially one with a toll). Clever readers may note that turnpike is itself a tosspot word. The word shun comes from Old English scunian (to avoid or fear).

First usage

This word showed up in the mid-1800s.

Published by Richard

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

2 thoughts on “smashmouth

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