Sometimes, you just need a good giggle. The following five words give the editors here at Scribendi a good chuckle. It may be nerd humor, but we hope our readers appreciate it as much as we do. Who knew the English language could be so much fun?
If your sense of humor is anything like mine, you're picturing a large alligator standing on its hind legs pointing an accusatory finger at another creature (for some reason, I am picturing that other creature as a heron). But perhaps you’re a bit harder to impress because you already know that the word allegator refers to a person who alleges something.
No, this is not a dormitory for vomiting. This term actually refers to the entrances or passageways to a theater or an amphitheater.
At first glance, this humorous word bears a striking resemblance to another word with which I am sure you are familiar. You might think that formication has something to do with fornication, but you would be very wrong. Formication is actually a medical term referring to the sensation or delusion that one has bugs crawling beneath one's skin. This unpleasant sensation is a common side effect of methamphetamine abuse—thankfully, formication is completely unrelated to fornication.
No, this is not referring to several tiny, hairy-footed hobbits on unexpected journeys (there is only one Bilbo Baggins, after all). Bilboes were actually a type of iron shackles used on prisoners and slaves until the early 1800s. It's a good thing that the only bilboes most people are familiar with these days are of the stout and friendly hobbit variety.
If you want to catch most laymen off guard, mention to them that you saw a turdiform in your backyard the other day. Of course, you'll only be referring to a bird of the Turdidae family (like an American robin), but they don't need to know that!