The 9 most interesting words I learned in 2016

Reading on an ereaderMatt Cardy/Getty ImagesI love reading — and writing down new words.

As an editor at Business Insider, I spend all day reading and writing … and then reading and writing some more.

So it’s no surprise that I’m a nerd when it comes to words.

Whenever I stumble across an unfamiliar word or phrase, I look it up and write it down in my planner, creating a log of all the new terms I’ve learned over the course of the year. (Like I said, nerd.)

I’m sure I’m not the only one out there with a propensity for learning and digesting new words, so I’m sharing my favourites from 2016 with the hope you’ll find them as fun as I do.

Don’t let me nerd out alone:

  • Milquetoast: A very timid, unassertive, spineless person, especially one who is easily dominated or intimidated
  • Gaslighting: To cause someone to doubt his or her sanity through the use of psychological manipulation
  • Kismet: Fate, destiny
  • Beaucoup: Many, numerous, much (it’s the same in English as in its original French)
  • Maladroit: Unskillful, awkward, bungling, tactless
  • Profligate: Recklessly extravagant or wasteful
  • Malfeasance: Wrongdoing by a public official
  • Aspersion: An attack on the reputation of someone or something
  • Cenote: A deep natural well or sinkhole (I discovered this word recently, when my colleagues used it beautifully in an article about eating at Trump Grill restaurant in Manhattan’s Trump Tower.)

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