Posted by: Jack Henry | July 20, 2017

Editor’s Corner: 10 Words to Make You Sound Wicked Smart

Today I’m sharing a list of words I found on Your Dictionary. I think you’ll recognize all the words, and you may know many or most of the definitions. You’re all such smart cookies.

First, a caveat—these are not words we typically use in our documentation or in our communication with clients because our goal is to be clear and concise, not to use the “wickedest” words we know. However, you can use these words to impress your friends and family. I plan to use them to annoy my husband and sons—they may all be bigger than I am, but who knows more words? Bam!

In case you want to test yourself, I’ve listed the words alone first. See how many you can define on your own.

· elucidate

· malaise

· non sequitur

· obfuscate

· perfunctory

· quid pro quo

· scintillating

· quintessential

· vitriol

· sycophant

Now scroll down to see the definitions and sentence examples provided by Your Dictionary.

· elucidate: to explain or make something clear (part of speech: verb)

Sentence example: Could you elucidate on that concept so that I know what you are talking about?

· malaise: physical discomfort of a general feeling or being under the weather (part of speech: noun)

Sentence example: She suffered from a malaise that kept her from enjoying the party.

· non sequitur: a statement or something that has nothing to do with a previous statement or its surroundings (part of speech: noun)

Sentence example: The comment was a real non sequitur after what had already been said.

· obfuscate: to confuse someone, or to obscure the meaning of something (part of speech: verb)

Sentence example: The teenagers used a lot of texting code to obfuscate their messages from their parents.

· perfunctory: something done without much care or attention (part of speech: adjective)

Sentence example: The customer made a perfunctory review of the sales agreement before he signed.

· quid pro quo: giving something in exchange for getting something; origin: Latin meaning "this for that" (part of speech: noun)

Sentence example: He gave her food from his garden as a quid pro quo for her cutting his hair.

· scintillating: something fascinating or brilliantly clever (part of speech: adjective)

Sentence example: She created a scintillating presentation for the meeting

· quintessential: a typical example of a particular person or characteristic. (part of speech: adjective)

Sentence example: It was the quintessential chocolate chip cookie with a chewy texture and giant chips of chocolate.

· vitriol: bitter feelings expressed in writing or speaking (part of speech: noun)

Sentence example: Their reactions to his comments were pure vitriol.

sycophant: a person who tries to gain attention by flattering wealthy or influential people. (part of speech: noun)

Sentence example: She became a real sycophant when she tried to convince her boss to give her a good referral.

Donna Bradley Burcher | Senior Technical Editor | Symitar®

8985 Balboa Ave. | San Diego, CA 92123 | Ph. 619.278.0432 | Extension: 765432

Symitar Technical Publications Writing and Editing Requests

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  1. […] was already at their wit’s end after I wrote about, and started using, historical swear words and words that make you sound “wicked smart.” They’re going to run away crying after I throw down some of these. I’m so […]

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