miscellany/etymology

If You Wanted To Be Specific, You Could Say It Was “Disgustingly Ingustable” (but then everyone would hate you)

i realize this most recent Archaic Food Word must have been a long time coming because i can’t even remember the last time i typed or thought of typing AFW (because it always reminds me of DFW- David Foster Wallace, who often acronymised [totally a word] things in his writing, for, i believe, both style and convenience).

so:

ingustable (adj.) – alternately “not fit to be tasted” and “incapable of being tasted; not perceptible by the sense of taste.” that’s an interesting little double meaning, i think, because it comes close to being a word which in its polysemy contains its own opposite. not quite, but close, because “not fit to be tasted” may mean it tastes so bad (which may mean so much, ie: so intensely), which is not like not tasting at all, at all. people could get so confused!

say for example you’re at a party and someone’s like “Hey, How’s That Artichoke Dip?” and you say “Ingustable.” that leaves them being like “Wait, Did He Mean Inedibly Bad, Or Was That A Sarcastic Exaggeration Of How Lacking In Flavour It Is?”

who wants to put people in that kind of situation? geez.

~

one could argue that something that is not finished being seasoned is ingustable because it is not yet ready to be tasted, but i don’t think that’s how the word is used.

i mean, was used. which is probably, like, never.

except in 1646, by Browne: “the body of that element is ingustable, void of all sapidity.”

sapidity btw, just means taste – the having of taste. oh, oh, wait, it also means (like, presumably, gustable) having pleasant taste, ah ha!

i was hoping to find that vapid was somehow related, but i think it may be coincidental. while it can mean “lacking or having lost life, sharpness, or flavor; insipid; flat. as in: vapid tea.”, i don’t think -rhyming- holds a lot of weight, etymologically. (admittedly they are not unrelated – vapid can be traced back to vapour, sapid to sapereto taste [latin], and we know [now] that aroma and taste are inextricably linked, in terms of the interactions between volatile particulate matter and our sensory reception, but i don’t know that it’s any way constitutive a relation)

and that’s alls i know.

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One thought on “If You Wanted To Be Specific, You Could Say It Was “Disgustingly Ingustable” (but then everyone would hate you)

  1. Pingback: “Such Praise Inspires With Diviner Lust Your Friends, Who Guttle With Greater Gust”* « still crapulent

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