Can You Decipher These Sesquipedalian Sayings?
Sesquipedalian — how ’bout that for a $10 word? It means “characterized by the use of long words.” So, I suppose in order to use the word sesquipedalian, you have to be sesquipedalian.
But today’s post isn’t just a meditation on the word sesquipedalian. It’s a challenge to the loquacious among us. I was cleaning up my office the other day, in preparation for my overseas trip, and came across folder full of old worksheets from my public school teaching days. This was my “go to” folder. The one I pulled out in a pinch when I needed something vaguely English-related to keep students busy. Over the years, I gathered some fun and interesting stuff. This is one of my favorites.
I’d love to give credit to the creator of this worksheet, but there’s no name on it and it’s at least a couple decades old. So, I render my thanks to the great A. Nonymous, that most modest and prolific of authors.
Below are ten common sayings, maxims, adages, saws, aphorisms, apothegms, or, if you prefer, proverbs. They won’t look very common at first, however, because they have been transcribed by someone given to grandiloquent loquacity. Your job is to translate these obtuse and multisyllabic expressions into their better known renditions.
I’ll post the answers in a comment below. I gave you the first one so you get the idea. Tell me how many you got right in the comments below!
1. Precipitancy creates prodigality. (Haste makes waste.)
2. Compute not your immature gallinaceans prior to the puncture of their brittle epidermic.
3. Pulchritude is merely epidermal.
4. Abstain from becoming lachrymose due to the scattering of lacteal fluid.
5. Tenants of vitreous abodes ought to propel no lithoidal fragments.
6. Cleave gramineous matter for fodder during the period in which the orb of the day is refulgent.
7. Every substance which coruscates is not fashioned from aureate metal.
8. It is not feasible for mendicants to be indicators of preferences.
9. The individual of the class Aves arriving prior to the appointed time seizes the invertebrate animals of the phylum Vermes.
10. An individual attached to another by esteem or affection at the moment of exigency may be construed to be an individual attached to another by affection, indubitably.
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