The Bride of the First House (bride) wrote,
The Bride of the First House
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Word of the Day - "quondam"

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quondam \KWAHN-dum or KWAHN-dam\ adjective
     : former, sometime

Sample Usage:
     After they moved into their new house, Mike and Lynn discovered a cache of hundred dollar bills hidden behind the fridge by the quondam owner.

Did You Know?
     Looking for an unusual and creative way to say "former"? "Quondam" (which came to English in the 16th century from Latin "quondam," meaning "formerly") certainly fits the bill.

Or maybe you'd prefer one of its synonyms: "whilom," "ci-devant" or "preterit." Or you could really go crazy with "umquhile," a word that is extremely rare even in its more natural Scots English setting. "Quondam" itself isn't exactly ubiquitous, but it's used more than any of the other words above.

If you're looking for something a bit more pedestrian, you might try yet another synonym: "erstwhile." Despite its wonderfully archaic flavor, "erstwhile" is a highly favored alternative.


What caught my eye here was "umquhile". A good friend of mine, J. Ardian Lee, is a historical fantasy author and her first novel, "Son of the Sword" and the sequel "Outlaw Sword" are set in 18th century Scotland at the time of the Jacobite rebellion. "umquhile" might have been a really good word to use.

See my Word Collection

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  • Blast from the Past!

    weather : sunny outside : 17°C mood : ... Heh, it'll be interesting to see who reads this journal anymore =) The…

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