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I do not think it means what you think it means

This week, in The Properjob, my colleagues challenged me to a game of Call My Bluff, an old British TV gameshow about words.

(It’s possible I talk about obscure words too much. Curse my logophilic multiloquence.)

Want to play? Below you'll find 7 sadly overlooked words I found in corners. Your challenge, if you choose to accept it, is to pick each word's correct definitions from the three I offer. One definition is true-truth, the others are completely made-up. Pick correctly - you are big-brainbox verbivore and you win. Choose wrongly - you’ve been bluffed, my friend.

Got it? Go! (Answers below. No cheating.)


  1. Wobbliness when in motion?

  2. Being filthy rich?

  3. Attractiveness of the lips and mouth?

Does BLOOTERED mean:

  1. Exhausted, as though you had recently been thrashed?

  2. Drunk (top-heavy, dilvered and other words for drunk are available)?

  3. Somewhat ample in the bosom area?

Does MULLOCK mean:

  1. A person who is present at every celebration, feast, or jollification whether invited or not?

  2. Dirt, rubbish, clart, other fluttergrubbery or similar?

  3. The sound made when crossing sticky mud or, as it’s called in Sussex, gubber, slab or stodge?

Does QUIDDLER mean:

  1. A paste made from overripe fruit, traditionally eaten with strong cheese?

  2. An explicable tickling sensation, most often experienced at night?

  3. A person who wastes their time in trifling or useless employments (which do not include Call My Bluff inspired blogs, thank you)?

Does VAFROUS mean:

  1. Having the scent and cold of fog, particularly a haar or sea fret?

  2. An alternative to various, implying many too many?

  3. Crafty, cunning (with a subtle but lingering hint of old magicks)?


  1. Over-excited and/or indecisive behaviour?

  2. To shuffle while muttering?

  3. An object of unknown or forgotten purpose?


  1. A brewery (or bwerwy as I would pronounce it, if I couldn’t avoid saying it)?

  2. A library (libwerwy)?

  3. Adjacent to the periphery (perwifferwy)?

Hooray! Hope you had fun.

One last thing you might enjoy. In writing this I stumbled across a delicious 17th Century dictionary by Elisha Colescontaining many thousands of hard words.’ I loved it.

If we played this game with Elisha, he’d define qualm as calmness, or the sound of ravens, and he wouldn’t be bluffing.

Answers: 2-1-2-3-3-2-1


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