You say isolato, I say isolato.

You say isolato, I say isolato.

I suppose that pun doesn’t work in text format, but get the gist I think you did.


This all refers to an idea I’ve had for occasional posts; ‘etynoms’.

‘Etynom’ is a play on ‘etymon’, which is the root of ‘etymology’. I like etymology, see. Specifically, an etymon is an earlier or root form of another word- the kind you look for while researching etymology. The greek means something like ‘the true sense’. For example: ‘equine’ is an etymon of ‘equestrian’.

It’s fun! Especially when you change it to ‘etynom’ and pop a picture of a cat into the mix.

So, ignoring the fact that it’s not fun at all for anyone else, I’m going to plough on obliviously like Tom Cruise’s career. Every now and then I’ll grab a word from’s word of the day, or from a book I’m reading. Then I’ll explain what it means (as much for my own benefit as anyone else’s) and make fun of it a bit.

Today’s word be:


(noun) definition:
A person who is spiritually isolated from or out of sympathy with his or her times or society.

1850–55;  < Italian  < Latin insulātus.

Mirriam-Webster definition:
One who is physically or spiritually isolated from his fellowman

Obviously, isolato is an etynom of isolate.

Used in a sentence:

Every teenage boy with a dictionary and an aversion to sports considers himself an isolato at some point or another, before growing a goatee and buying a System of a Down album.

This is a lovely word, isn’t it? It’s a good, less extreme alternative to ‘misanthrope’. It’s like ‘hermit’ but without the connotation of living outside of society- an isolato might be surrounded by people and still not feel that he or she belongs.

Plus, it sounds a bit like a lonely potato.

by Bret

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