Tag Archives: benelvolence

Word of the week, 3rd April

Pecksniffian

Pek-sni-fee-un; adjective; affecting one’s moral principles or benevolence.

This wonderfully theatrical word originates from Dickens’ Martin Chuzzlewit, after the character Seth Pecksniff. I don’t think it serves quite as well in conversation as it does written down; it’s the kind of word you read and can only enjoy after double checking in your head that you really understand its meaning and context. Pausing for this long in conversation would be at least a little awkward.

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