Most Hated Words in the English Language?

Last week, The Huffington Post released a list of words that readers find disgusting or hard to hear. I’ve always thought about words that drive me nuts, as well as ones I could say all day. Here’s their best of the worst:

  1. Maggots
  2. Sexy
  3. Pants
  4. Adipocere
  5. Fetus
  6. Viscous
  7. Roaches
  8. Hockey
  9. Moist
  10. Hillbilly
  11. Wolverine
  12. Slurp
  13. Hubby
  14. Panties
  15. Tender
          Now I have no problems with pants/panties, other than they’re singular words that sound plural. “Sexy” doesn’t bother me either, unless you use “sex” to describe genitalia instead of the act. Of course, any words about bugs like “maggots” and “roaches” are horrible–but I think “cockroach” is even worse. I also can’t stand “hubby,” simply because too many women use it when referring to their boyfriends–it’s short for “husband” people!!! “Fetus” also sounds gross, and I’ve wondered: what’s the plural form? Fetuses? Feti? Ugh.
          Personally, though, I have to give it to “moist.” It’s like nails on a chalkboard! It’s too versatile; I shouldn’t be able to use the same word for a delicious chocolate cake and a sweaty old man in the sauna…or worse, using “moist” in the bedroom, which should just be straight-up illegal!
          Other words that I would add to this list include “pus,” “crusty,” “mucus,” and “phelgm”–really anything to describe repulsive bodily functions or fluids. One of the many reasons why I want to be a writer, not a doctor.
          Thus, in order to cleanse my ears, here’s some of my favorite-sounding words:
  1. Loquacious
  2. Assassinate
  3. Annihilate
  4. Audacity
  5. Debacle
  6. Ethereal
  7. Prestidigitation
  8. Eclectic
  9. Adversary
  10. Lament
  11. Malevolent
  12. Pernicious
  13. Archaic
  14. Capricious
  15. Melody
          And yes, I realize that I have a lot of words dealing with destruction and evil. I’m not condoning the content, but what can I say? These words just roll off the tongue!
          What words do you love and hate? Any that need to be banned immediately? (But for the sake of my “G” rating, let’s avoid slang and slurs, alright? That’s a whole different level of ugly!)

9 thoughts on “Most Hated Words in the English Language?

  1. I like your list of words that YOU like – yes, they roll off the tongue so nicely. A couple I would add would be serendipity and iridescent. I suppose there is probably something deeply psychological in the fact that most of our favorite words have more than 2 syllables? As for words to hate – I agree, add mucus, pus, and phlegm to the list. They just sound disgusting. I looked back at that Huffington Post article you mentioned, but had to quit when I got to the picture for viscous – EWWW!
    Good post. Thanks for sharing.

    • Thanks for the comment! I love “serendipity” and “iridescent” too–just beautiful! Never really thought about the amount of syllables, perhaps I should ask my linguist friends! Haha!

  2. I’d like to humbly submit “exquisite” and “silhouette” to the good list. 🙂 And “moist” is one of the worst words ever, but one they missed is “nostril.” Yuck!

  3. Couldn’t agree more on the words fetus, moist and panties. Yuck! I have to add my least favourite word to the list – spurt. Don’t know why I hate it so much, it just maddens me everytime I see or hear it. Another word I hate is uterus.

    I also HATE most medical terms for things – especially in sex scenes in stories. It grates me everytime I have to read “He put his erect penis into her vagina and sperm came out and went to her uterus” I thought I was reading a story, not a medical textbook. Ick.

    My favourite words, in no particular order are: Monkey, banana, ziggurat, cheese, alien, flutter. Don’t know why.

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