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Sharing our love for authors, and the stories they are inspired to tell.

Wondrous Words Wednesday …. June 29th 2011


My single word this week, is from a book that I have just finished, but have yet to review.

It was a fantastically moving, thought-provoking read and I have linked to my ‘Book Beginnings’ excerpt from the book, so that you can get a taster, although as usual, the Amazon link will take you through to the full synopsis, if you want to check out the reviews it has already received.

‘This Perfect World’ by Suzanne Bugler

This Title Is Available Fron Amazon


Lumpen: …” Heddy was dark and lumpen, with heavy eyebrows and an unfortunately large mole on her left cheek, right below her eye.”

Lumpen: …


1. Of or relating to dispossessed, often displaced people who have been cut off from the socioeconomic class with which they would ordinarily be identified: lumpen intellectuals unable to find work in their fields. 

2. Of or relating to the lumpenproletariat.
3. Vulgar or common; plebeian: “Popular novelists and their mass readership remain a despised lumpen minority” (Leslie Fiedler).

1. (used with a pl. verb) The lumpenproletariat.
2. (used with a sing. verb) A member of the lumpenproletariat.
If, like me, you thought that ‘lumpen’ was an alternative to lumpy, large, or heavy …. how wrong could I have been!!!
Sometimes guessing at the meaning of a word I am uncertain of doesn’t pay off, it’s always better for me to check it out as I go.

Wondrous Words Wednesday is a weekly meme where we share new (to us) words that we’ve encountered in our reading.  It is hosted by Kathy, over at BermudaOnion’s Weblog. You can either stop by and leave a link to your own ‘mystery’ words of the week, or just browse the eclectic mix of words that others have discovered, there is always a great selection. Just don’t forget that Kathy and the rest of us, all love to read your comments  as well!!

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I can’t remember a time, even as a child, when I haven’t been passionate about books and reading.
I began blogging, when I realised just how many other people out there shared my passion for the written word and I have been continually amazed at the wealth of books that are available and the amount of great new friends I have made, from literally 'The Four Corners Of The World'.

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    • Hi Joy,

      Nice to meet you, thanks for stopping by.

      Even in the context of the sentence where the word was used, I would still have made an educated guess at ‘lumpen’ meaning lumpy, overweight etc.

      I was certainly insulted to think that as an avid fiction reader, I was part of a ‘despised lumpen minority’!!!

    • Hello Annie,

      I too have come across the phrase ‘lumpenproletariat’ several times, but never ‘lumpen’ as a single word.

      That single word, as part of the opening paragraph, does give a strong image of the character of Heddy, as seen by other people. It is a book that certainly teaches us in an uncomfortable way, the error of judging someone by appearances and by using words such as ‘lumpen’ which is really quite an awful word.

    • Hi Louise,

      I agree with you about it being a better alternative word to lumpy, sounds more ‘Olde Worlde’ somehow.

      I am always amazed at the amount of words I discover when reading, that I haven’t come across before and have no idea of the meaning of.

      It just goes to show how little we actually know about our own language and it always makes me feel a little inferior when an author seemingly drops these great words seamlessly into a story.

Written by Yvonne