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"Ugly" or "Gross-Sounding" Words

Joined
Feb 23, 2011
What do you find are the "ugliest" or "grossest-sounding" words in the English language (or whatever your preferred language is)? Words that are just downright annoying and/or displeasing to hear/say.

Some of mine are:

  1. Luggage;
  2. Moist;
  3. Grits;
  4. Meal*;
  5. Slum;
  6. Ointment;
  7. Pus;
  8. Funky;
  9. Smelt;
  10. Keen.
* I used to see this one all the time whenever I had to punch out for my lunch break back when I worked at Kmart. Damn near wanted to put in my two-week notice because of it. lol
 

Batman

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Since getting interested in linguistics and becoming Linguistically Enlightened, my attitude about making aesthetic judgments on how certain languages or words sound has changed considerably.

That said, "snogging", a British English term referring to making out/amorous kissing might be the word I dislike the most when it comes to sound. Sounds like something from Tolkien's Black Speech.
 

Deus

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Everything sounds displeasing in the Scouse accent I must say, but in terms of words that are horrible in general there are:

Keen
Reem
Memes
Tripe
Kek
Ulcer
Minge
Curdle
Sick
 
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Jamie

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Since getting interested in linguistics and becoming Linguistically Enlightened, my attitude about making aesthetic judgments on how certain languages or words sound has changed considerably.

That said, "snogging", a British English term referring to making out/amorous kissing might be the word I dislike the most when it comes to sound. Sounds like something from Tolkien's Black Speech.
I'm not sure what you mean. What is wrong with thinking a word sounds gross? There's nothing you can do to control how your brain reacts to a sound. I mean, you're literally defending a word here. An inanimate concept (not even an object). I'm sure the word "moist" is going to be okay if I say it sounds gross(it does). What if a word I made was communicated by scratching a nail on a chalkboard? Is everyone supposed to be respect that and not judge the sound? What is your "attitude" on making linguistic judgments? I fail to see anything wrong with it. Literally who cares?
 

Batman

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I'm not sure what you mean. What is wrong with thinking a word sounds gross? There's nothing you can do to control how your brain reacts to a sound. I mean, you're literally defending a word here. An inanimate concept (not even an object). I'm sure the word "moist" is going to be okay if I say it sounds gross(it does). What if a word I made was communicated by scratching a nail on a chalkboard? Is everyone supposed to be respect that and not judge the sound? What is your "attitude" on making linguistic judgments? I fail to see anything wrong with it. Literally who cares?
I didn't say or imply it's not okay to find a word ugly - on the contrary, I think it's perfectly natural and okay. I mean that my understanding of linguistics has changed how I think about the phonetic properties of words, changing how I aesthetically evaluate words. It so happens that words I previously would have considered ugly are nowadays just as phonetically interesting to me as words I find pretty or indifferent, and that affects my emotional responses to them. Hence my attitude about how words sound has changed for me personally and I find far fewer things "ugly".

Then I went on to mention a word I still find ugly lol. So your entire concern about what I said is irrelevant as these are positions I don' t hold, but sorry if I confused you.
 

Jamie

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Then I went on to mention a word I still find ugly lol. So your entire concern about what I said is irrelevant as these are positions I don' t hold, but sorry if I confused you.
I assumed you were sort of saying "well, if I had to pick one, I'd pick x word, but I think it's wrong to do so", or something. I understand what you mean now though.
 

Batman

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I assumed you were sort of saying "well, if I had to pick one, I'd pick x word, but I think it's wrong to do so", or something. I understand what you mean now though.
Right. I definitely don't think there's anything "wrong" with finding a word ugly, whatsoever. Feeling otherwise would be quite silly. It'd be like someone saying that there's something "wrong" with finding the note C# being played on a saxophone ugly. I'm just saying that if you learn to play saxophone and learn about saxophone music and saxophone culture, your attitude might change on how you aesthetically evaluate C# on the saxophone.
 

Vanessa28

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In my country it is the word Vak (subject) because it is EXACTLY the same pronounced as your famous F word.
And in my language the word STRONT is so gross. It means poop. But it is the less polite way to say it. But damn, the way it is pronounced....
 

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