Thursday, 8 August 2013

Blandander - "You Shamrock My World, Baby"

Pink love heart
A special message for a special reader - you
(painting by Peter Smith)


Verb trans. Colloquial. Late 19th century.
[Compare Irish blanndar dissimulation, flattery.]

Tempt by blandishment (into); cajole.

One of the best things about writing Lexicolatry is the class of reader it seems to attract. Erudite, creative types; thinkers and doers; the intelligentsia of the blogosphere. And that includes you, of course. You are without a doubt in the elite of blog readers, and it's an honour to have you here.

Take the word blandander for example. It seems redundant to write that it's a rare word, not appearing in the online versions of the Merriam-Webster, Collins or Chambers dictionaries (an internet search was similarly unfruitful, returning several hits where people had incoherently written "It was bland ... and ... er ..."). I also feel very silly indeed in writing that it's related to the verb blandish, meaning 'to flatter gently, to coax, to cajole' and the noun blandishment, meaning 'flattery, cajolery'. I've no doubt at all that you know all of this already, and if you did not, your penetrating perspicacity would have made the connections obvious. Although not given as its true origin, it's interesting that the OED compares blandander to the Irish word blanndar, isn't it? Did you notice that? Yes, of course you did. What was I thinking?

Just an unrelated piece of information: I recently read somewhere that good-looking people tend to like, share, follow and link more when reading blogs. That's interesting, isn't it? It caught my eye because I have noticed that readers of Lexicolatry are better looking than the average blog reader. And that includes you, of course. You're a good-looking, intelligent blog reader, aren't you? Of course you are. I don't even need to point out where the buttons to link, like, follow and share are, do I? (they're right below the last line of this post)

So thank you all, beloved, gorgeous, learned readers of Lexicolatry. You really are wonderful and amazing (especially you ... yes you ... reading right now), and I thank you for having the wit, charm and intelligence to support this blog (buttons are right below - go on).

Do please leave your finest, most ingenious blandandering comments below.


  1. I hereby crown you the most blandiloquous blandanderer of 2013!
    Take a bow sir!

  2. I haven't felt this special since.....well.....ever.

    If anyone else is reading this, can I highly recommend It's like unadulterated happiness condensed into blog-form with some really lovely words shoved in.

    -blushing clueless

    1. Why thank you C. It does seem that blandandering is an effective blogging strategy - I shall use it more often.

    2. By the way, is this just 'flattery' or is there a subtle difference?


    3. I suppose 'to blandander' is a form of flattery, but it also carries the idea of tempting someone into something, of cajoling them to do something, that flattery doesn't necessarily carry.

  3. We suspicious (paranoid?) types cannot be tempted by such superfluous blandandering!

    1. Nuts! You're sharp, Kara - you saw right through me!