Words from Gaelic – 15 Words

curmudgeon

an irascible, cantankerous person full of stubborn ideas

But rather than grumpily eying them in staff meetings and turning yourself into the office curmudgeon, consider cutting them some slack.
—US News Aug 4, 2014
bog

wet spongy ground of decomposing vegetation

A rain chain directs water into the frog pond, which overflows down streams, over waterfalls, into ponds and on to the cranberry bog.
—Seattle Times Jul 23, 2014
glen

a narrow secluded valley (in the mountains)

Slowly,…their lips met like butterflies in a flowery glen, they entwined spiritually and bodily in a long, smooth embrace.
—The Milagro Beanfield War
wraith

a mental representation of some haunting experience

What’s that pale, veiled wraith I see, gliding through the shadows of a twilit glade as if barely touching the ground?
—Seattle Times Jun 2, 2014
whiskey

a liquor made from fermented mash of grain

Straight bourbon whiskey ages a minimum of two years, though the average maturity is four years or older.
—US News Aug 17, 2014
spree

a brief indulgence of your impulses

During his golf spree, Bengali also estimates he lifted 27 tons of golf clubs, calculating an average of 2 pounds per club per swing.
—Los Angeles Times Aug 13, 2014
bob

a hair style for women and children

She is a bob stalwart – a wavy number, sometimes plus comedy barrettes, has seen her through three series of Girls – but this is a departure.
–The Guardian Aug 18, 2014
trouser

(usually in the plural) a garment extending from the waist to the knee or ankle, covering each leg separately

At school, flouting hostile opinion, she wore trousers, played football and got involved in fights.
—The Guardian Aug 5, 2014
loop

anything with a round or oval shape

It is tied with double loops of twine in virtually the same way that fishermen tie together their reed boats today.
—New York Times Aug 7, 2014
glom

seize upon or latch onto something

Has anyone ever glommed on to her or taken advantage of her because of her famous family?
—Time Jul 25, 2012
forsythia

any of various early blooming oleaceous shrubs of the genus Forsythia; native to eastern Asia and southern Europe but widely cultivated for their branches of bright yellow bell-shaped flowers

The capital city sprawled below the trail, which was lined with azaleas, forsythia and magnolia in bloom.
—New York Times May 2, 2012
spunky

willing to face danger

They described their mother as a boisterous, spunky woman with an uncommon knack for engaging with other people and making them feel comfortable.
—New York Times Aug 17, 2014
curd

coagulated milk; used to make cheese

Case in point: a buffalo milk curd, spread creamily onto crisp toasts that are topped with Iberico ham and served with a rich onion broth.
—Time May 10, 2014
clan

group of people related by blood or marriage

The target of the government’s disarmament campaign is the feared and powerful clan warlords.
—Time Aug 15, 2014
inglenook

a corner by a fireplace

Inside, a brick fireplace and inglenook speak to the era and define the home’s core.
—New York Times Jan 20, 2011

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