Sally M (sallymn) wrote in 1word1day,
Sally M

Sunday Word: Obstreperous

obstreperous [uhb-strep-er-uhs]

1 resisting control or restraint in a difficult manner; unruly
2 noisy, clamorous, or boisterous


The elder Prescott hopes Teddy will soak up some practical business experience, but Ruthie offers his services to the Parlonis, obstreperous retirees whose personal assistants seem to come and go through a revolving door. (Ellen Morton, Sally Thorne's 'Second First Impressions' is full of cracking attraction and cackling laughs, The Washington Post, April 2021)

But she is too aggressive and obstreperous to remain there, and is sent to an asylum in upstate New York, until she's deported to Germany, and winds up in another asylum, where she was declared 'completely sane.' (Pat Launer, Hershey Felder Portrays the Dying Composer Rachmaninoff in 'Nicholas, Anna & Sergei', Times of San Diego, May 2021)

Half-past nine struck in the middle of the performance of 'Auld Lang Syne,' a most obstreperous proceeding, during which there was an immense amount of standing with one foot on the table, knocking mugs together and shaking hands, without which accompaniments it seems impossible for the youths of Britain to take part in that famous old song. (Thomas Hughes, Tom Brown's Schooldays)


'clamorous, noisy, boisterous, especially in opposition,' c. 1600, from Latin obstreperus 'clamorous,' from obstrepere 'drown with noise, make a noise against, oppose noisily,' from ob 'against' + strepere 'make a noise,' from PIE strep-, said to be imitative (compare Latin stertare 'to snore,' Old Norse þrefa 'to quarrel,' þrapt 'chattering, gossip,' Old English þræft 'quarrel'). But de Vaan writes, 'It is uncertain that strep- goes back to PIE, since it is only found in Latin and Germanic.' Extended sense of 'resisting control, management, or advice' is by 1650s. (Online Etymology Dictionary)

Tags: adjective, latin, o, old english, wordsmith: sallymn

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