Gentle suspense. Tortured heroes. Mischievous heroines.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Word of the Day jilt

Word of the Day

  • jilt
  • audio pronunciation
  • \JILT\
: to drop (someone, such as a lover) capriciously or unfeelingly
The song is about a woman who jilts her beloved for another man, only to realize she has made a terrible mistake.

"A Georgia court ruled that a man who jilted his fiancée is liable for $50,000 in damages." — From an article by Robert W. Wood in Forbes, December 8, 2013
Today's word traces back to the English dialect noun "jillet" ("a flirtatious girl"), itself from "Jill" or "Gill" (used both as a proper name and as a noun meaning "girl") plus the diminutive suffix "-et." "Jilt" itself came into use in the second half of the 17th century as a noun meaning "an unchaste woman" (a sense that is now obsolete) or "a woman who capriciously casts a lover aside," and also as a verb used for the actions of such a woman. These days, the person doing the jilting can be either male or female, and though "jilt" usually implies the sudden ending of a romantic relationship, it can also be used beyond the context of a romantic relationship with the broader meaning "to sever close relations with."


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