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Portmanteau words


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A portmanteau, or portmanteau word, is a combination of two or more other words. The word portmanteau was introduced by Lewis Carroll, to explain words in the poem 'The Jabberwocky', such as frumious (fuming + furious), slithy (slimy + lithe) and chortle (chuckle + snort).

Portmanteaus are found in many languages, you'll probably find some in your native language as well.

They're not just limited to 'ordinary' words either, cities and countries can have portmanteau names, and names of several people can be mashed together.

I personally quite like portmanteau words.

Some examples (other than those listed above) are:

* smog (smoke + fog)

* brunch (breakfast + lunch)

Do you know of any more? And do you know any in other languages?

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Yes, portmanteau words are fascinating.  I find it particularly interesting to see the ones that arise in pop culture and/or media and over time become acceptable as standard English.

Here are a few that started out that way, and are standard English nowadays.

guesstimate = guess + estimate

edutainment =  education + entertainment

infomercial =  information + commercial

mockumentary = mock + documentary

cosplay = costume + play

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  • 4 months later...
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I think portmanteaus are a terrific example of the ever-changing nature of language, and they can also function quite well in terms of jokes...

What is big, grey, and missing a glass slipper?

Cinderellaphant.

*baddumtish*

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I think portmanteaus are a terrific example of the ever-changing nature of language, and they can also function quite well in terms of jokes...

What is big, grey, and missing a glass slipper?

Cinderellaphant.

*baddumtish*

Portmanteaus are words from by merging the sounds and meaning of two different words. They are mixed smoothly and inseparable. They also fit to relate harmoniously. For example: The voices blends well. Chortle comes from chuckle and snort. Bicurious comes from bisexual and curious, bleen from blue and green, digerati comes from digital and literati, hasbian comes from has been and lesbian, hotac comes from hotel and accommodation. 

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More portmanteaus:

Dramamentary for drama and documentary.

Now, let me cast you back in time with the hope of meeting what might prove to be one of the more ancient portmanteaus. The word pharaoh seems to be an ancient portmanteau of phar which means a house and aoh which means great. Assuming that we can apply this modern term to such an ancient civilization. Therefore, a pharaoh means a great house. Really?  :confused: Because the pharaoh was living in a great house.

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  • 2 weeks later...

There are a lot of great portmanteau words.  The ones Lewis Carroll invented are the best, but some new ones also have a quirkiness about them:

chillax = chill and relax (adolescences use it mostly :)  : "Chilax, dude!"

Fantabulous  = fantastic and fabulous (also a more 'youthful' word) "It was FANTABULOUS winning gold at the Olympics"

frabjous= fabulous and jubilant (one of  the L.C. originals) "O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!

Advertorial =  advertisement and editorial (an ad that's made to resemble an editorial)

Galumphing = galloping + Thumping (another LC original) "He went gallumphing back"

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  • 3 weeks later...

"Cryptocurrency" is a relatively new term that is going to see a surge in popularity. It's a term describing virtual currencies that are encrypted for security. I feel like, as cryptocurrencies become more and more popular, we will be seeing the word a lot more.

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A few I can think of offhand:

'Blog' from 'web log'.

'Vlog' from 'video log' or 'video blog'.

'Mockumentary' from 'mock documentary'.

'Chuggers' are 'charity muggers'. (A personal favourite - so apt!)

And another one from Lewis Carroll - 'chortle', which is apparently a combination of 'chuckle + snort'!

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A few I can think of offhand:

'Blog' from 'web log'.

'Vlog' from 'video log' or 'video blog'.

'Mockumentary' from 'mock documentary'.

'Chuggers' are 'charity muggers'. (A personal favourite - so apt!)

And another one from Lewis Carroll - 'chortle', which is apparently a combination of 'chuckle + snort'!

Wow, you really seem to be an expert in this field. Thank you for sharing those lovely words. I didn't know that blog is actually a combination of web & log. That is indeed interesting.

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The two languages that I speak are portmanteau words:

Spanglish and Frenglish

:speechless:

Haha, I can almost relate to this! I combine English with my mother tongue so effortlessly and so often that I don't even realize when I'm doing it. It used to bother my mother terribly, but I guess she realized I was a lost case.  :confused:  I'm trying to cut down on this and I've been making a conscious effort to keep myself from speaking hybrid languages.

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  • 2 months later...

Wow this is great! This is the first time I am able to know what words like these are called. In German language it is very common. It's just that they don't appear in the dictionary. Are these words, on the other hand, do?

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  • 2 weeks later...

Chargeware (credit card charge + software)

Riskware (risk + software)

Adware (advertisements + software)

A couple of portmanteau words have sprouted in the world of technology and computers.

And here is a list of more portmanteau words, some of which have already been mentioned in this thread.

http://www.dailywritingtips.com/25-favorite-portmanteau-words/

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I thought long and hard for any other word since most that were familiar to me were already mentioned. The one that came to mind was camcorder which come from camera and recorder.

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