'Rodomontade': The latest English lesson from Shashi Tharoor
Remember how Congress leader Shashi Tharoor sent India into a tizzy with one tweet on "farrago"? It definitely wasn't the only time the politician has left us stumped with his impressive vocabulary. He has a new word for us. This time, it's "rodomontade". Ironically, he used it while claiming he wants to use the most well-suited words, "not the most obscure or rodomontade ones!"
To all the well-meaning folks who send me parodies of my supposed speaking/writing style: The purpose of speaking or writing is to communicate w/ precision. I choose my words because they are the best ones for the idea i want to convey, not the most obscure or rodomontade ones!— Shashi Tharoor (@ShashiTharoor) December 13, 2017
A little lesson from Oxford: according to the dictionary, 'rodomontade' means 'boastful or inflated talk or behavior'. It can be traced to the early 18th century: "from French, from obsolete Italian rodomontada, from Italian rodomonte, from the name of a boastful character in the medieval Orlando epics." If using 'romontade' is too much, you could go for its synonyms: balderdash, gibberish, blarney, blather, blether!
Most responded with humor. "I want my school fees back!" tweeted @balendu29. "Even Apple spellcheck doesn't have it," said @zujalal. "Rodomontade is the new farrago," posted @abhyudey. Then there were some who weren't impressed. "Communication is two-way. If listener doesn't understand, maybe your words won't stay meaningful," said @caninebuff. "Dr. Tharoor, what's the difference between rodomontade and boastful, pretentious, hifalutin, grandiose?" asked @AartiTikoo.
When such a learned man gives us new words, we're only to believe he's teaching us something unfamiliar. So when he wrote on the 'Padmavati' controversy, "Rajasthan's female literacy among lowest. Education more important thang Hoog hats," we only naturally ruffled through our dictionaries. Till he clarified it was a typo! He was only meaning to write "ghoonghat" (veil) when auto-correct interfered.