Word Nerd: 5 types of people with a big, black cloud over their head

22 May

Mondays – that manmade scourge – are the favorite day of no sane person. People who love Mondays usually fall somewhere between ‘annoyingly enthusiastic’ and ‘mentally disturbed’. The only reasonable response to Mondays is an ill-tempered grunt. So, without further ado, here are a few ways to describe most people on Mondays (unfortunately, some people are like this on other days also).


1. Grouch

This word, referring to a habitually grumpy person, dates back to the late 19th century. It comes from the Old French grouchier, which means to grumble or murmur. Interestingly, ‘grudge’ – a feeling of ill will or resentment towards someone – comes from the same root.


2. Grump

This word is much older than ‘grouch’. It dates back to the early 18th century, when ‘to grump’ was to utter inarticulate sounds expressing displeasure. A grump can refer to a grumpy person, or to a fit of sulking. Also used as a verb.


3. Grinch

This describes someone who is a spoilsport or killjoy. It comes from the character in the 1957 children’s classic, How The Grinch Stole Christmas, written by the amazing Dr. Seuss.


4. Crank

Engineers know a crank as part of an axle. This meaning comes from the Old English cranc, which refers to a weaver’s implement. But even the non-engineers among us know the North American meaning of crank – a bad-tempered person.

Captain Haddock Censored


5. Curmudgeon

This word goes way back to the 16th century. Back then, it referred to someone who was grasping or greedy. Today, it just means a bad-tempered individual, especially an elderly person. The ‘cur’ in curmudgeon entered English three centuries prior, from other Germanic languages where it referred to snarling or growling.

Got any synonyms to add to our list? Leave a comment below!

Check out previous Word Nerd posts here!


By: Uma Asher


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