Week seventy-nine: FODGEL (probability 9817), by David Sutton

FODGEL is a rather pleasing Scots word that means plump or solidly built. It is one of quite a number of archaic or dialect words that allow one to hint at a certain rotundity of build without actually using the word 'fat'. Other Scots words with a similar meaning are BUIRDLY and SONSIE (or SONSY). Then we have CHUFFY, CUBBY, FUBBY, FUBSY, PODDY, PUDGY, the Shakespearean PLUMPIE (beware: this is not a fruit dessert so no PLUMPIES*) and the Miltonic variant of buxom, BUCKSOM. STUGGY, SQUABBY and SQUATTY convey in addition a certain shortness of stature.

Nor should one forget the rather expressive Yiddish words ZAFTIG (or ZOFTIG), meaning having a full rounded figure, pleasingly plump; this is from the German saftig, juicy. It might, for example, bring a certain well-known cookery program presenter to mind. But I like to think she'd be equally happy with FODGEL.


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