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Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for June 29, 2021 is:

oaf • OHF  • noun

1 : a stupid person : boob

2 : a big clumsy slow-witted person


“And then Robin … explained to her courteously how the law made it imperative on him to bring the letter to the very house that was indicated, let the owner of the letter be where she might; and he laid down the law very satisfactorily with sundry long-worded quotations. Not to much effect, however, for the housemaid called him an oaf….” — Anthony Trollope, Framley Parsonage, 1861

“We meet Ian, a shy young orphan elf whose dad died just before he was born. And we meet Ian’s older brother Barley, a loud bumbling oaf of an elf who Ian tolerates.” — Brent Northup, (Helena, Montana), 19 Mar. 2020

Did you know?

A long time ago in England, it was believed that elves sometimes secretly exchanged their babies for human babies. This was used as an explanation when parents found themselves with a baby that failed to meet expectations or desires: these parents believed that their real baby had been stolen by elves and that a changeling had been left in its place. The label for such a child was auf, or alfe, (meaning “an elf’s or a goblin’s child”), which was later altered to form our present-day oaf. Although the linguistic history is not entirely clear, auf is likely from the Middle English alven, elven, meaning “elf” or “fairy.” Today, the word oaf is no longer associated with babies and is instead applied to anyone who appears especially unintelligent or graceless.

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Ken Saunders

Freelancer, Gadget collector, Biohacker

Ken Saunders is a freelance writer, gadget collector and Biohacker. Kens’ professional background is in Information Technology as well as Health and Wellness. His experience has given him a broad base from which to approach many topics. He especially enjoys researching and writing articles on the topics of Technology, Food, and all things Freelancing. His articles have appeared in many online sites, including, Andrew Christian, and can learn more about his services at

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