Taradiddle

Category: Language Adventures

April 25, 2024

I wouldn’t say a word that could be reckoned as injurious,
But to find a mother younger than her son is very curious,
And that’s a kind of mother that is usually spurious.
Taradiddle, taradiddle, tol lol lay!

Iolanthe

1882
Gilbert and Sullivan

Although you might think ‘taradiddle’ is nearly archaic, it has been used as recently as J.K. Rowling and holds a place of honor on Merriam-Webster’s list of weird words. It is rarely used and, therefore, unfamiliar to the everyday conversation. Still, it is a fun, colorful word that could enliven even the dullest paragraph and bring a smile to the reader’s face.

‘Fib’ could be used as a synonym, but who would want to use ‘fib’ when they could use ‘taradiddle?’ Taradiddle deepens the meaning of fib by expanding the definition to include trivial and childish lies as the above lyric from Iolanthe illustrates. Taradiddle is whimsical and means a small lie, a petty or silly lie, or even pretentious nonsense.

Taradiddle, taradiddle, tol lol lay!
Use a great, fun word today!

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