German has the wonderful word Schmuggelware. This means “contraband”. Literally, “smuggle-ware”; what better describes smuggled wares than the word “smuggle-ware”? I mean, what a wonderful, self-explaining Germanic compound if ever there was one! Ever since I came across the word Schmuggelware, I have loan translated it into English as smuggle-ware (with or without the dash) whenever I have needed to use the word “contraband”.
Smuggle-ware is therefore an example of what I call a “smuggle-word“! A “smuggle-word” is literally an Anglish/true Saxon English word, often made-up and non-extant, which I attempt to smuggle into the English language. In other words, I use the word and hope that noone notices that I have used a non-standard or non-extant word(!) Smuggle-words are characterised by seeming very English, almost as if they have been in use all along.
As I say, smuggle-ware is a great example of a smuggle-word. Others that I use are shadow-outline, forelast (“penultimate”), and self-standing. Indeed, my try at Anglish, call it “Project Wrixlings” if you will, is characterised by using Saxon English words and phrases that already exist — and where they don’t exist, they are so natural, often implied, that they seem like they really ought to exist.
Smuggle-words can also include words that are no longer in use, such as deadhouse (mortuary). A word such as “ghostfire”, one suggestion for a true Saxon alternative to the Greek “electricity”, would not be a “smuggle-word” as I cannot see how one would be able to smuggle that into one’s English.
So smuggling words into English, hidden in plain sight amongst normal (perhaps even highly Greco-Latinised) English, is another great tool to spread true, Saxon, homeborn English.
© 2016 Bryan A. J. Parry
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[…] in to conversations, too. Whilst “pintle” and “pizzle” cannot be classed as smuggle-words, they never-the-less do seem to be understood within context without folk piping up. Probably […]
[…] talking about Anglish words, but almost no time talking about spellings. The why is that I try to smuggle Anglish in. Non-standard spellings, however, draw attention to themselves. Therefore, I have only […]
“Ghostfire” instead of “electricity”???? This is a joke, right? I’m a non-native speaker, so I don’t have “the feeling of the language, as one of our English teachers kept repeating to us, but, please, do explain, what would an English person understand by reading the word “ghostfire”? Is this a fire produced by a ghost? Is it a fire which is a ghost itself? Is it a fire as elusive as a ghost? Is it a fire that appears at midnight in a rainy winter night? I don’t intend to insult you, I can even relate to your fervent desire to see your language purged of unnecessary linguistic loanwords, but some things border on ridiculousness.
As a general note: You do realize you’re fighting a lost battle, don’t you? I mean the whole thing is fine as an academic debate or exercise, but even you cannot really believe that people will ever replace “electricity” with “ghostfire” or “telephone” with what? … “farvoice”? Πάν μέτρον άριστον, φίλε.
Fighting a losing battle is the noblest thing of all! 😉 “Ghostfire” feels like fire which is somehow spectral. Thank you for your words!
[…] works wood, but with the craft-like connotations. Woodworker is a nice formation; indeed, I try to smuggle this word into everyday talk. Woodcrafter or woodcraftsman work, too, altho I feel not as well. Workwood, […]