in Wacky Word Wednesday

Sometimes you meet someone who takes your breath away. They look like the sunshine, their words are like honey, just being around them makes you feel all tingly, and when they leave, you look after them with a mix of longing and romantic abandon. That look has a name and it’s today’s Wacky Word: smicker.

quo topSmicker

[smick·er]

-verb

To look at or after amorously.

quo botSmicker

The word smicker may not be as old as the particular look that it describes, but it’s old enough that its origins are a bit of a mystery. It appears to be related to a host of words across a variety of European languages: the Swedish word “smikra,” meaning to flatter, the Proto Germanic “smikraz,” meaning elegant, and the Middle English “smiker,” meaning beautiful. Some linguists think smicker’s beginning lies even further back, in the Proto-Indo-European language spoken sometime around 3,500 B.C.E., but its present (though now rarely used) incarnation comes from Scotland.

The oldest published work to contain smicker was written by an Englishman named John Ford, who in 1606 wrote a poem entitled The Earl of Devonshire Deceased:

“No, his deep-reaching spirit could not brook

The fond addiction to such vanity,

Regardful of his honour he forsook

The smicker use of court humanity,

Or rural clownage, or urbanity…”

The poem was a flop and – unlike many of the words used in William Shakespeare’s plays around the same time – smicker never really found its way into popular usage. But we here at Simply CSOFT are a bunch of hopeless romantics, so here are some example sentences that should help us bring back this much needed word:

  • “Nara smacked her boyfriend in the back of the head when she noticed him smickering after a pretty girl on the street.”
  • “You can smicker at her all you want, but her heart still belongs to someone else.”

We hope you find someone you like smickering after you! Join us next week for another exciting edition of Wacky Word Wednesday!

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