Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for April 5, 2020 is:
forsooth • fer-SOOTH • adverb
: in truth : indeed — often used to imply contempt or doubt
“For sure and forsooth, that means savings for you, dear Renaissance-loving reveler, if you purchase your entry to the weekend-whimsical Irwindale festival by Jan. 6, 2020.” —NBCLosAngeles.com, 26 Dec. 2019
“There is a man haunts the forest, that / abuses our young plants with carving ‘Rosalind’ on / their barks; hangs odes upon hawthorns and elegies / on brambles, all, forsooth, deifying the name of / Rosalind.” — William Shakespeare, As You Like It, 1599
Did you know?
Forsooth sounds like a dated word, but it is still part of modern English; it is primarily used in humorous or ironic contexts, or in a manner intended to play off the word’s archaic vibe. Forsooth was formed from the combination of the preposition for and the noun sooth. Sooth survives as both a noun (meaning “truth” or “reality”) and an adjective (meaning “true,” “sweet,” or “soft”), though it is rarely used by contemporary speakers and writers. It primarily lives on in the verb soothe (which originally meant “to show, assert, or confirm the truth of”) and in the noun soothsayer (that is, “truthsayer”), a name for someone who can predict the future.