Now there's a word you don't hear anymore


Watching a Kate Adie documentary about the Tiananmen Square massacre and contemporary news reports always refer to the capital of China as Peking.

Honestly can’t remember Beijing being called that in at least a decade.

Ok, I do see Peking Duck on menus, occasionally, but also see Beijing Duck.

Mrs VB made exactly that point after hearing a radio clip from the time of Tiananmen.

There are plenty of other geopolitical ones of course e.g. Rhodesia, Ceylon, Burma.

I haven’t heard ‘nudist’ for quite a while. Or ‘Belisha beacon’, although it appears that that’s still what they’re called. Or ‘gruntled’ (disgruntled seems common enough). Or tenoroon (cf bassoon).


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Slightly niche that Graeme.

However I think I shall make an effort to revive Gruntled, if only to annoy the FoLs.

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Not as niche as ‘wobbulator’. Or ‘stuffed chine’ (which is fantastic).


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Oh yes, it is. Might have a go at making it soon.

Never heard of that before, looks great!

Interestingly, disgruntled came first by several hundred years; gruntled was a made up antonym that caught on.

Had some of that when staying with Paul and Sam, bloody lovely, especially the one from the local butcher’s.

“place to growl in, private room, den”

-1. infatuated or obsessed:
-smiling into each other’s eyes, a seemingly twitterpated couple glided past

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cattywampus: not lined up or arranged correctly

I grew up hearing this word, and I still use it, much to my wife’s amusement.


Some of these sound like Ben Elton’s made-up Shakespearean words for Upstart Crow !

A lot of the city ones like Beijing, Kolkata,Mumbai are just the British finally pronouncing the original properly and not the garbled mess made by the administrators in the British Empire where if something was a bit difficult they made no effort at all and just anglicised the names

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I’d almost forgotten that. Good one.

Slide rule

Now only used by football commentators

“that was a perfect pass with slide rule accuracy”

I often wonder if they or the people listening have any idea what they are talking about

(I think I was in the last year that had to use slide rules for O level Maths before they allowed calculators)

New fangled technology according to @stu . Slide rules were just being introduced when he was at school but he couldn’t really see what advantages they offered over the traditional abacus.


I went to a technical school in Chislehurst, Bromley Kent. We learned to use them. Haven’t seen one since about '74. Doubt I’d know how to turn one on now.

Still have mine :blush:

At Eton we were taught to work out problems in our head and not rely on such crutches

My old mucker moggers is testament to this

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If it’s ingenuity you want, then this takes some beating

If you’ve got one don’t try to take it to bits to find out how it works.



I’ve not seen one before, but it really does bring to mind the notion of a “pocket difference engine”.

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