fun with archaic words
can old words become new again?
Sometimes, words just disappear from the language. For some reason that’s unknown to me, people just stop using these words. When they were used, all of the now-archaic words had meaning and were used very appropriately. Over the passage of years, the words were forgotten by people who had different methods of communication. And then… along came the internet, and it was easy to find anything, including lost words. Which is why I am suggesting this fun creative writing exercise, So… first… a list of archaic words, all beginning with the letter T, together with their definitions:
- timbrel: a tamourine or similar instrument
- trigon: a triangle
- twelvemonth: a year
- troth: faith or loyalty when pledged in a solemn undertaking
- tilt with: engage in a contest with
- thither: to or toward that place
- taiga: a forest
- tantivy: a rapid gallop or ride
- tapster: a person who serves at a bar
- tocsin: an alarm bell or signal.
And here’s the concept of the story. I’m going to write a story, incorporating the ten archaic words above. The format that I will use will be a diary entry.
Twas a stormy night last night, and I couldn’t sleep a wink. It all started when I found out that I had been exposed to some dread disease, called Dread Disease because no one could think of a proper name for it. I had to take a walk when twas dark and stormy so as not to risk encountering other people and exposing them to the cleverly named Dread Disease. So I walked out into the rain and the wind and then, I heard it. A lone timbrel, interrupting the howling wind. The shaking of the timbrel sounded like life, while the wind’s howls sounded like doom. And, when you’re avoiding people, instead of screaming “UNCLEAN” every two seconds, you want to follow the timbrel, even though it’s probably not a good idea, and certainly not as appealing as following bagpipes or recorder or flute.
But, after hearing the timbrel, which called out for me to follow it, I forgot all about Dread Disease, and I followed it, right into the taiga, where the weather was even darker and even stormier, if that’s at all possible. Anything, of course, being possible in the darkest and most dramatic taiga. But, suddenly, the tocsin sounded, and I shuddered in fear. Who knew that I was running around loose, carrying Dread Disease Germs? Twas time to go deeper in the taiga, to avoid the taint of the other humans. For the most Dread of all Dread Diseases is the attitude of other humans who do not love their fellow humans.
And, as I wandered through taiga so thick that I could see nothing, I heard an otherworldly voice call out to me to go thither, toward something that I couldn’t identify. The voice said that it twas a portal to another dimension, where the Dread Disease didn’t exist and where I didn’t have to fear spreading anything unhealthy to anyone. Tentatively, I stepped through it, wondering if I would ever come back this way again. I noticed that it was hard to step through, as it was shaped like a trigon, so I tripped my way through it. On the other side, there was a village. Some people approached me and they seemed unaware of the Dread Disease. They were very small, and I felt like a giant, which was odd because I am always the smallest. They led me to a carriage, and I got in, uncertain if the tiny carriage could bear my weight. But I needn’t have worried. As soon as I sat off, the horses took off at a tantivy. One of the little people sitting with me asked if I was a giant who was brought in for the annual tilting. I was very startled and hoped that I didn’t have to tilt with anyone because I was kicked out of jousting school for knocking the crowns off of the king’s and queen’s heads as they were happily hunting for rabbits for no reason. Someone else hunted for the rabbits for the royal rabbit stew.
Before long, we had arrived at a pub, which was located in an odd spot, deep in the woods, far away from anything. Yet, there were many little people inside, even though there was no reasonf for anyone to be anywhere near this pub. I heard that none of them had been home in a twelvemonth and that happened often. The pub just sort of swallowed you, and you forgot to go home. I was afraid that would happen to me. Nevertheless, I went in. The tapster offered me a beverage that tasted rich, creamy, and memory stealing. Already, even after sitting there for just a few moments, my memories of life before the pub were swifty fading.. There was something in the beverage, but I didn’t know. It didn’t have a specific smell to it. I sat in the pub, expecting to hear all sorts of people declaring their undying troth to each other, just like in a play by Shakespeare. In fact, all of the little people did look they came out of the Globe Theater
So I prepared to flee, as looks can be deceiving. And then fled…