I came across a word which not only was new to me but was so new that I couldn’t guess what it meant. it was describing someone and called them a picaroon; was this positive or negative? I had no idea. I was reminded of other words ending with ‘oon’ – macaroon, maroon, racoon, typhoon… but the word is from the Spanish and actually means  a rogue, thief, adventurer – particularly in the  pirate sense.

There are an amazing number of words ending in ‘oon’, actually, not counting those 4-letter ones like soon and boon, or 5-letter ones like spoon… in fact as far as I can find out there are more than seventy! here is a tiny sample:

  • gombroon – white pottery
  • bradoon – a small ringed snaffle
  • madzoon – Caspian sea yoghurt
  • godroon – a rounded moulding
  • matzoon – same as madzoon
  • dahoon – an evergreen shrub
  • gaboon – a viper
  • ratoon – a new shoot

If by some chance, any of these unusual words should crop up in the quiz, then I hope I remember what they mean!!

And here are four contrabassoons:

 

7 thoughts on “Rogue, thief, adventurer

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