Monday, April 01, 2013

A is for Arfname

Arfname: An heir; from Old Norse arfr (inheritance) and niman (to take); used from the 10th to 13th centuries.

In A Guide for Butlers and Other Household Staff (1827), Robert Roberts promotes the interests of arfnames; instructing that old deeds such as wills be revived using a solution of gall nuts and white wine.

Not to be confused with Arkenflame, which is actually not the guy by the first name David who pumps out new-agey ambient music albums with names such as Chillout Lounge or Celtic Chillout, at a rate of about a dozen per day, because that dude's name is actually Arkenstone but for some reason I can never remember this and I always think Arkenflame instead. Isn't that deliriously exciting? P.S. Don't tell anyone I have those two aforementioned goofy albums. Thanks! You're a peach.

Source: Dictionary of Early English (1955) Joseph Shipley
Google hits: 4300

Agatewards: To go agatewards is to accompany one's guest part of their way home, possibly for reasons of guidance or safety if your estate is huge enough or maybe you have pet wolverines or lawn chihuahuas.  It has been explained as meaning gate-wards or toward the gate, but is more likely from the Craven dialect, gaitwards: to accompany.

As with the generation before them, who inhabited the family farm, my parents are in the habit of accompanying guests out the door and over to the laneway where their car is parked and to send them off with a wave. In the days of my grandparents' tenure, it was the farm dogs who championed this "last office of hospitality," for they would chase our car down the quarter-mile laneway to the town line, and often then down the line all the way to the highway! What can I say? I was a popular kid.

Not to be confused with the cloudy or striped quartz crystal called agate which is worth anywhere from 6 to 16 gold pieces according to the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons Dungeon Masters Guide (1979) by Gary Gygax!

Source: Dictionary of Archaic and Provincial Words (1855) James Halliwell
Google hits: 400

Acromania: Extreme madness.

Let's use it in a sentence: "Nicolas Cage was a merry old soul and a merry old soul was he, though prone to occasional bouts of acromania."

Source: Imperial Lexicon (c. 1850) Rev. John Boag
Google hits: 35,100

Nicholas Cage just loves Molar World.


Maria said...

Acromania - Yes, I can identify with extreme madness, I'm a writer, and doing the challenge too! Surely that ranks me high?

Like the way the word acromania just rolls off my tongue. :-)

Happy Blogging!

Anonymous said...

Very interesting post...never heard of acromania before...found you on the A-Z Challenge list!

MOV said...

great post!

and thanks for putting my blog on your sidebar-- made me smile. :)