Just like facts and flies, English words have life spans.
Some are thousands of years old, from before English officially existed; others change or are replaced or get ditched entirely.
Here are 18 uncommon or obsolete words that we think may have died early. We found them in two places: a book called “The Word Museum: The Most Remarkable English Words Ever Forgotten” by Jeffrey Kacirk, and on a blog called Obsolete Word of The Day that’s been out of service since 2010. Both are fantastic—you should check them out.
Snoutfair: A person with a handsome countenance—“The Word Museum: The Most Remarkable English Words Ever Forgotten” by Jeffrey Kacirk
Pussyvan: A flurry, temper—“The Word Museum” (Kacirk)
Wonder-wench: A sweetheart—“The Word Museum” (Kacirk)
Lunting: Walking while smoking a pipe—John Mactaggart’s “Scottish Gallovidian Encyclopedia,” 1824