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Word of the Day
Monday, May 19, 2014

Definitions for verbicide

  1. the willful distortion or depreciation of the original meaning of a word.
  2. a person who willfully distorts the meaning of a word.

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Citations for verbicide
Life and language are alike sacred. Homicide and verbicide--that is, violent treatment of a word with fatal results to its legitimate meaning, which is its life--are alike forbidden. Oliver Wendell Holmes, "The Autocrat of the Breakfast-Table," The Atlantic Monthly, 1857
Men often commit verbicide because they want to snatch a word as a party banner, to appropriate its 'selling quality'. C.S. Lewis, Studies in Words, 1960
Origin of verbicide
Verbicide joins a variant of the Latin verbum, meaning "word," with -cide, a suffix used in the formation of compound words that means "killer" or "act of killing."