Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Grandiloquence – Wordplay Wednesday™ 09/23/2020

Queen for a Grand Punctuation Day 

This week’s

word is fit for a queen! Or king … or irritatingly pretentious person … 

GRANDILOQUENCE (gran-ʹdi-lɘ-kwɘn[t]s; 1589) n. – a lofty, extravagantly colorful, pompous, or bombastic style, manner, or quality esp. in language — adj. grandiloquent / adv. grandiloquently. [WW #287]   

MAH-velous, dah-ling! … If I do say so myself! Grandiloquence is one of those words that is fun to enunciate, with a spelling that hints at a grandiose definition.  

The English language enjoys many similar words of character, some of which are within the grandiloquence definition, or part of its spelling: grandeur, extravagant, eloquence, elaborate, opulence, ostentatious, pretentious … mash ‘em altogether and you get grandiloquence!  

How many people do you know personify a grandiloquent character? Applying a little “real life” to your novels and short stories is how great fiction characters are born! Some of the more colorful include “Auntie Mame,” Hercule Poirot, and Captain Hook, don’t you think?  

Are you parents, still grappling with home schooling? How about organizing a spelling bee? Grandiloquence is a great word for middle-schoolers who are bored with conventional words, or even the ol’ standby, supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!  

Spice up your writing, your home schooling, and way of thinking. Auntie Mame exclaimed, flinging her arms wide in grandiloquence, “Life's a banquet and most poor suckers are starving to death! So c’mon, live!”  

And a bonus tip for this week’s Wordplay …

Thursday September 24th is National Punctuation Day! (FYI, the site for this commemorative day is not on a secure link.) So mind your Ps & Qs! Punctuation & Quirks* … my literary version of Ps & Qs since there doesn’t seem to be a definitive explanation! *Quirks in writing … everyone has ‘em, but don’t break the punctuation rules for your quirkiness without good reason!

Let’s consider the common comma, for instance … a most misused punctuation mark in writing. Its most popular usage is as a substitute for the word “and”; if you keep that in mind, you’re two steps ahead.

But there is so much for to the comma. In the grandiloquence definition, for example, its meaning would be skewed if commas were omitted: “a lofty extravagantly colorful pompous or bombastic style…” The style is extravagantly colorful? And what’s a colorful pompous? But extremely bogged down if you loaded it up with an and between each descriptive word.

These may be simple confusions to sort out on a second reading, but we’re generally skimming along quickly and don’t appreciate being made to stop and straighten our minds out over cumbersome sentence structure. Flow. It’s all about a fluid flow without confusing context and frustrating logjams. Keep that in mind, writers, as you create your wordly masterpieces with perfunctory punctuation.  

Word Challenge: GRANDILOQUENCE. What a grand stylistic word! Let your mind create with uninhibited color, as you fit grandiloquence into your week of eloquently extravagant writings and clever conversations.  

Learning knows no prejudices or boundaries, and it isn’t fattening! Expanding your mind is a no-cost, simple joy. Do you feel that way too? What’s your inspiration? Share your creative genius and Wordplay Wednesday comments below.  

Write first for yourself … only then can you write for others. (L.Rochelle)   

Cheers to learning a new word today! 


[LinDee Rochelle is a writer and editor by trade, and an author by way of Rock & Roll. She has published two books in her Blast from Your Past series (of three) about pioneering R&R Radio DJs. True behind-the-mic tales make GREAT Holiday and anytime Gifts available on Amazon (eBook and print): Book 1Rock & Roll Radio DJs: The First Five Years 1954-1959; and Book 2Rock & Roll Radio DJs: The Swinging Sixties. Coming soon … The Psychedelic Seventies!] 

*LR Notes: 1) Dictionary definitions are quoted from Webster’s New World College Dictionary. Yes, we sometimes present them out of “official” context—but that’s half the fun! Think of it as “creative context.” 2) a] Recent dictionary additions to definitions include a date of first use, if known; b] words in small caps indicate “see also.” 3) Neither I (LinDee Rochelle) nor Penchant for Penning are responsible for how you use information found here, that may result in legal action.  



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