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85 Funny Words You Probably Don’t Know

Do you think you have a good vocabulary? We can guarantee you've probably never heard these funny words before.

friendlily funny word Funny words to


No, it’s not misspelled. It sounds wrong, but—trust us—it’s right! Many weird words seem fake at first. Do you know what this one means? The definition: To do something in a friendly way. For example: “He friendlily questioned my use of the word friendlily.”

macaronic funny word Funny


Looking to find this word on an Italian dinner menu topped with cheese? You won’t. Think you can guess what it means? It actually refers to when someone mixes two different languages together like, “I vogilio a side of meatballs with my macaronic per favore…I’m saying it incorrecto, aren’t I?” Here are fancy words that will make you sound smarter.

dongle funny word Funny


This sounds like it could be a brand that sells fancy new dog toys, but this is definitely not something you should put on the shopping list for your new puppy. Before you take a trip to PetSmart, find out what a dongle actually is. It’s a piece of hardware that connects a computer to another device. You may use a dongle on a regular basis to connect to a digital media player to stream shows or to use Bluetooth and WiFi.

pronk funny word Funny


Wham! Bam! Pronk? Not so much, unless it’s the sound you made when you bonk someone on the head. Any guesses what this funny word could mean? A pronk is a weak or foolish individual. It is also used as a verb when referring to antelope and similar animals, which means to leap with an arched back and stiff legs as a form of display or a sign it is threatened.

abear funny word Funny


Not the grizzly, terrifying kind! This word has nothing to do with animals. We’ll give you a second guess. Abear means to endure or put up with, which means you could feasibly say: “I abeared this encounter with a bear!” Here are more words that don’t mean what you think they’d mean.

cabotage funny word Funny


Let’s make one thing clear: Cabotage does not mean to sabotage a taxi driver, which we do not recommend in any circumstance, just as a general tip for safe driving. So what’s the real definition?

It means the transport of goods and passengers between two places in the same country, or the right to do so. Originally, it only referred to coastal travel between ports, but the definition has expanded to include travel by air, railway, and by road.

oxter funny word Funny


As much as we would love to tell you that oxter is a group of oxen and otters that became friends and peacefully coexist against all odds, that would be a lie.

Surprises! Oxter has nothing to do with oxen or otters or any kind of animal. Believe it or not, this funny word is an outdated term for “armpit.” Even when you think you know what a word means, misnomers will prove you wrong.

agelast funny word Funny


Funny words mean funny things, and this word does not refer to the fountain of youth. It actually means someone who never laughs, and you definitely don’t want to be that person. Check out these 10 words that only exist in the English language.

godwottery funny word Funny


Hark! This term dost indicate an archaic or elaborate sort of speech. Godwottery is an outdated term, and today people may also describe it as “purple prose.” If you use any of these 75 weird words in everyday life, you might be accused of godwottery. They seem like funny words to say, but you’ll probably be met with an awkward silence.  

spondulicks funny word Funny


Thank goodness that this antiquated word for “cash” hasn’t been used since the eighteenth century; we think it would be a pretty difficult word for rappers to rhyme.

fartlek funny word Funny


A fartlek is a type of endurance training in which a runner switches between sprinting and jogging. Can someone give us the phone number for the marketing team that came up with this word? We have a few questions.

popple funny word Funny


This word, which means “choppy seas,” seems onomatopoetic. We can imagine waves breaking on the shore, making the noise “popple popple popple.”

everywhen funny word Funny


This funny word means “all the time” or “always,” but it reads like a typo. Add this to your list of funny words to say to confuse your friends.

strawhat funny word Funny


Get out your wicker picnic baskets and rotten tomatoes, this word means “having to do with summer theatre.”

knurly funny word Funny


“Knurly” describes something with “small protuberances,” such as knobs or tumors. This is one of those weird words you don’t want to hear at a doctor’s appointment. These words from early dictionaries no longer exist.

megadeath funny word Funny


This unit refers to “one million deaths,” and is usually used to discuss nuclear warfare. This sounds like it belongs on our list of funny words, or even a list of metal bands. But the definition is actually terrifying. 
palaver funny word Funny


You may not have heard of a palaver, but you’ve surely engaged in one; it usually describes an unproductive conversation or long dispute between people from different worldviews or cultures.

teazel funny word Funny


A teazel is a prickly herb plant that looks a bit like a cattail. It has flower heads with sharp leaves and was once used in the textile industry to comb wool. Learn these hard to pronounce words in the English language.

bumfuzzle funny word Funny


This funny word means to confuse, perplex, or fluster, according to Merriam Webster. We sure would be flustered if someone used this word in conversation with us.

deckled funny word Funny


This word refers to the edges of papers that are cut by hand—if you’ve ever read a novel with pages that have messy-looking edges, you’ve read a “deckled” book.

cleek funny word Funny


This funny word refers to a “large hook.” This phonetic spelling is also how British people pronounce the word “clique.” Check out these other funny words and sayings from across the pond. 
buttress funny word Funny words to


A buttress is a type of architectural structure that stabilizes a wall or building; it can be seen in many gothic-style churches, castles, and cathedrals.

tweep funny word Funny


A person who uses Twitter can be called a “tweeter” or a “tweep,” but those of us who actually use the site just call ourselves “bored.”

yooper funny word Funny


This funny word is a nickname for a resident of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

spim Funny


This weird word means “spam sent over instant message.” Take the -am out of spam and replace it with “IM” for “Instant Message,” and you have Spim. We know these funny words might sound made up but they’re not—unlike these fake words that actually made it into the dictionary.

lickspittle funny word Funny


This is one of our favorite funny words—it means something similar to “brown-noser” or “kiss-up.” A lickspittle is someone who reveres authority.

spleenwort funny word Funny


“Spleenwort” is one of those weird words that doesn’t sound anything like the thing it describes. Though this word sounds like the name of an intestinal disease, it actually describes a kind of evergreen fern.

sozzled funny word Funny


This is one of the many funny words that means “drunk.” Its synonyms are endless.
hoecake funny word funny words to


A hoecake is a southern-style cornbread. This is one of those funny words that sound like insults, but a hoecake describes a very basic small cake made of cornmeal. These regional sayings will tell everyone where you’re from.

herky-jerky funny word funny words to


Like “willy-nilly,” this funny word means “characterized by irregular or unpredictable movements or style.” Why do so many weird words sound like insults? These are the 14 everyday words everyone misspells.

granny dumping funny word funny words to

Granny dumping

This word is used in the field of social work to describe the abandonment of an elderly person in a public place. It doesn’t sound so funny now, huh?

canoodle funny word funny words to


This word means to kiss and cuddle, but it would also be a great name for a pasta dish.

foolscap funny word funny words to


A foolscap refers to a cap with a bell (the kind usually worn by jesters). You might want to start using these hilariously made-up words if you’re into these funny words.

foggy bottom funny word funny words to

Foggy Bottom

This term that refers to the U.S. Department of State is one of the weird words that U.S. officials use to refer to parts of the government. You may also hear government officials calling three-letter agencies like the FBI the “Alphabet boys.”

flummery funny word funny words to


A “flummery” describes a soft jelly or porridge made with flour or meal, but more commonly it is used to describe an empty compliment. “I love how you’ll just wear anything!” or “You look so awake today!” are examples of flummery.

draggle funny word funny words to


To “draggle” something is to make something wet and dirty by dragging it. If you’ve ever worn too-long pants in the rain, you’ve draggled. Using these 10 words makes you immediately sound old.

cutesy-poo funny word funny words to


This is one of those funny words that sounds like a dog name, but it actually means “embarrassingly or sickeningly cute.”

loverly funny word funny words to


This weird word sounds like the word “lovely” being mispronounced by a swashbuckling 1920s gentleman. However, it just means “resembling or befitting a lover.” Make sure you know how to sound out these commonly mispronounced words.
makeweight funny word funny words to


A makeweight describes something that is thrown onto a scale to bring the weight on the scale to a certain value.

penuche funny word funny words to


Never heard this word before? It’s no surprise if you’re not a baker. A penuche is a sort of fudge that is made from brown sugar, buttercream, and nuts. These are the words that don’t mean what you think they do.

somnambulism funny word funny words to


This is a fancy catch-all word for the abnormal motor functions you might perform in your sleep, such as sleep-walking, sleep-showering, or sleep-blogging.

sobersides funny word funny words to


If you attend a memorial service, funeral or wake, you’ll encounter a lot of sobersides, or people with a serious or sad appearance. Sobersides can also be found outside of such events, and are also commonly referred to as “deadpans.” Here are other uncommon words we no longer use, but should.

smaze funny word funny words to


Not to be mistaken with Tyra Banks’ famous smize (smiling eyes,) a smaze is a combination of haze and smoke.

slimgullion funny word funny words to


A slumgullion is a cheap meat stew. It’s one of the English language’s weird words for food that don’t sound appetizing at all.

skirl funny word funny words to


This word describes the shrill, wailing sound that bagpipes make. Next time you’re at a St. Patrick’s Day parade, this is one of the weird words you can use to impress your friends.

wassail funny word funny words to


In medieval England, a “wassail” was a toast to the next apple harvest season. A wassail was conducted with mulled apple cider for good luck.

wamble funny word funny words to


This word means “to feel nausea,” and we think it’s perfect. This word seems like a combination of “rumble,” and “waddle,” which is exactly what we do when we feel sick. This word is a far cry from some of the most beautiful words in the English language.

wallah funny word funny words to


This word originates from South Asian dialects, and typically refers to a person who does a certain job.

unperson funny word funny words to


This word originates from George Orwell’s 1984in which people are removed from history, photographs, and documents in order to erase any proof that they existed. An “unperson” is someone who has been “erased” because of their misbehavior.

ufology funny word funny words to


“Ufology” is the study of UFOs, or unidentified flying objects. Working in this field is every kid’s dream!

waesucks funny word funny words to


This word can be substituted for the classic “alas!” and is used to express sadness, exasperation, or pity in Scotland. Learn the 50 words you might think are synonyms but really aren’t.
taliped funny word funny words to


This word describes a foot that is twisted out of shape. Hopefully, this is some vocab you’ll never need to use.

collywobbles funny word funny words to


Like “wamble,” this word is used to describe nausea and bellyaches. Next time you want to show off your repertoire of weird words, tell your boss that you’ve got a case of the “collywobbles,” and can’t come in tomorrow.

stumblebum funny word funny words to


Any idea what “Stumblebum” means? It’s one of our favorite funny words! If you are a klutz, halfwit, nincompoop, or moron, add another descriptor to your resume. A “stumblebum” is a clumsy or inept person.

grommet funny word funny words to


A grommet is a sort of fabric fastener that materials can be laced through. If you look at the top of your shower curtain, those little metal circles that your shower hooks lace through are called grommets.

potvalor funny word funny words to


“Potvalor” is another term for liquid courage—this word describes the confidence that results from an alcoholic drink. Find out 10 words you’ll only find in the English language.

smicker funny word funny words to


This word is like if “ogling” had an affectionate and innocent counterpart. To “smicker” at something means you are admiring a person, and it’s visible from your expression.

callipygian funny word funny words to


This word means “having shapely buttocks,” and it was first used in 1831. It was truly ahead of its time! Unfortunately, “Hey girl, you’re quite callipygian,” doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue. Don’t miss these hilarious slang words that’ll make you sound awesome.

gaberlunzie funny word funny words to


This word is a medieval Scottish term for a “licensed beggar.” Yes, licensed!

clapperclaw funny word funny words to


This word means “to claw with the nails.” Now you have a word to describe all of the weird things your cat does!

syzgy funny word funny words to


It’s hard to figure out which of the letters in this word is silent. It’s pronounced “sih-zih-jee,” and it describes a celestial phenomenon in which three celestial bodies are lined up in an almost perfectly straight line. An example of this event would be a solar eclipse.

rigamarole funny word funny words to


“Ah, you know. The whole rigamarole.” You’ve probably heard this word before, but have never considered what it actually means. A rigamarole is a confused or meaningless conversation or a complex procedure. Secret code words will make you second guess the conversations you’ve been overhearing.

airy-fairy funny word funny words to


Something that is airy-fairy lacks substance or purpose and is extremely impractical. This word is similar to “hippy-dippy,” but it puts an emphasis on the impracticality of the thing it is describing.

appoggiatura funny word funny words to


This one is difficult to pronounce, but it describes a pronounced, embellishing melodic note of music.

barnburner funny word funny words to


A barnburner is an event that is extremely interesting or exciting. If you’re someone who actually owns a barn, this might not sound too appealing. These 12 quirky words don’t have an English translation, but totally should.

ballyrag funny word funny words to


To “ballyrag” someone means to bully them. If you’re looking to avoid getting ballyragged, you might want to avoid using vocabulary like this.

ear trumpet funny word funny words to

Ear trumpet

An ear-trumpet is a device used by hard-of-hearing individuals. This device can collect and intensify sounds, but its name could also describe someone who talks your ear off.
inkle funny word funny words to


An inkle is a colored linen tape or braid woven through a narrow loom. At first glance, you might think it describes an idea that’s smaller than an inkling.

peacenik funny word funny words to


A peacenik might sound like the opposite of a beatnik, but the groups probably have some overlap. This word describes someone who participates in antiwar demonstrations. Check out the words that defined in 2019.

shalloon funny word funny words to


A shalloon is a lightweight twilled fabric of wool. In other words, if you’re not super into textiles, don’t worry about it.

blunderbuss funny word funny words to


A blunderbuss is a sort of firearm with a short barrel. This weapon was an early version of the shotgun.

ragamuffin funny word funny words to


A ragamuffin is a ragged and often disreputable person. A ragamuffin is also a type of cat.

crapulence funny word funny words to


Crapulence is a lack of self-restraint, especially when drinking. Next time you’re on a night out, don’t let your crapulence get the best of you.

dottle funny word funny words to


A dottle is the remaining tobacco in the bowl of a pipe after it’s been used for smoking.


You don’t have to be fabulous to confabulate, which means “to talk informally, to chat.” But it would certainly make people want to confabulate with you!


Not to be confused with an armadillo—though if you did mix up the two, that would be a peccadillo or, “a slight offense, a lapse in judgement.”


If this makes you think of Game of Thrones, you’re not far off. “Dragooned” means “forced,” especially by violent measures.


While this word can also refer to the planet, nothing here is in retrograde. This means “subject to change.”


Going to a party? You might want to put on your finest frippery, which is “an elegant, showy garment.” Or, more broadly, “something showy, frivolous, or nonessential.”


No, this isn’t the name of a Shakespeare character you’ve forgotten from high school. Like a womanizer, a lothario is a man whose chief interest is seducing women.


Your dog might be waggish, but not because Fido keeps wiggling his tail. Like “impish,” this word refers to a playful, humorous quality.


A little more fun than “chock-full,” this essentially means the same thing: “crammed, crowded, or stuffed.”


This one has a better-known, equally silly-sounding synonym: nitpicker. Pettifoggers are known to “quibble over trifles” and may make for shrewd lawyers.


After making it through this list, vocabulary might just be your bailiwick, “the sphere in which one has superior knowledge or authority.”

boonoggle funny word funny words to


A boondoggle is a wasteful or impractical project. Now, learn the words and phrases you’re probably using wrong.

Dani Walpole
Dani Walpole is an Editorial Intern at Reader's Digest. She is a senior at the State University of New York at New Paltz, where she is completing her degrees in Digital Media Production and English: Creative Writing. At SUNY, she works for WFNP 88.7 and writes for The New Paltz Oracle and The Teller Magazine. She is passionate about travel, rock music, and being employed after graduation.