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    • Join Date: Aug 2005
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    #1

    lexical differences

    Are there differences in meaning between: nitwit, dimwit, slow-witted, gormless? What's register of disrobe- is it formal? and is "to receive sb in semi-undress" rather humorous? Thanks in advance :)

  1. Hi_there_Carl's Avatar

    • Join Date: Aug 2007
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    #2

    Re: lexical differences

    Well they all mean "stupid" to one degree or another....

    I always associate "nitwit" with a scatterbrained (ADD) person not necessarily stupid. Dimwit and slow-witted are close synonyms and just mean that the person is mentally slow but not necessarily stupid. Gormless was a new one for me. As an American we don't hear this term but according to my dictionary it means stupid.


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
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    #3

    Re: lexical differences

    Gormless = It is a northern usage in Britain, coming from the Norse word "gaum" = understanding. So someone who is "gormless" is lacking understanding.

    To disrobe = to get undressed. It is archaic and not much used. It is certainly not a humorous term.

    • Member Info
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    #4

    Re: lexical differences

    Thank you for claryfing this for me. To Angelica: I thought that a state of semi-undress was humorous or used mostly in this way, not "disrobe". Didn't know it was archaic, thanks!

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