So I thought we could all do this together, take a break, and have some fun:
- Please create your an insult following the chart directions below and leave the insult in the comments. Feel free to add an optional note why you constructed this particular jab.
- Read the deposited insults aloud with gusto and verve (and spittle out those "s's" and "p's" when appropriate)!!!!!
- But most of all, sling some silly slights and smears so we can smirk and smile the rest of the day.
- Optional: Leave some creative teaching ideas for all my homeschooling, teaching, parenting followers to share and savor.
Combine one word from each of the three columns below, prefaced with "You" or "Thou":
Column 1 Column 2 Column 3 artless base-court apple-john bawdy bat-fowling baggage (encumberer) beslubbering beef-witted barnacle (tenacious) bootless(useless) beetle-headed bladder (filled with air) churlish(rude ) boil-brained boar-pig cockered(pampered) clapper-clawed bum-bailey craven(cowardly) common-kissing canker-blossom currish(contemptible ) crook-pated clack-dish dankish(damp,soggy) dismal-dreaming clotpole(oafish) dissembling(hypocrite) dizzy-eyed coxcomb(conceited dandy) droning(dull,monotone) doghearted codpiece(pant's crotch piece) errant(deviant) dread-bolted death-token fawning earth-vexing dewberry(fruit) fobbing(deceiving) elf-skinned flap-dragon froward(contrary) fat-kidneyed flax-wench frothy(mad) fen-sucked flirt-gill(girl of light behavior) gleeking(tricking) flap-mouthed foot-licker goatish fly-bitten fustilarian(scoundrel) gorbellied(tasteless) folly-fallen giglet(frivolous) impertinent fool-born gudgeon(slimey) infectious full-gorged haggard jarring guts-griping harpy(fierce-tempered woman from Greek myth) loggerheaded half-faced hedge-pig lumpish(boring) hasty-witted horn-beast mammering(hesitating) hedge-born hugger-mugger mangled hell-hated joithead(dunce) mewling(whimpering) idle-headed lewdster paunchy ill-breeding lout pribbling(vain chatter) ill-nurtured maggot-pie puking knotty-pated malt-worm puny milk-livered mammet(idiot, puppet) qualling(cowering) motley-minded measle rank onion-eyed minnow reeky plume-plucked miscreant roguish pottle-deep moldwarp(mole) ruttish(lascivious) pox-marked mumble-news saucy reeling-ripe nut-hook spleeny rough-hewn pigeon-egg spongy rude-growing pignut surly(bad-tempered) rump-fed puttock(buzzard) tottering shard-borne pumpion unmuzzled sheep-biting ratsbane vain spur-galled scut venomed swag-bellied skainsmate(messmate) villainous tardy-gaited strumpet warped tickle-brained varlot wayward toad-spotted vassal weedy unchin-snouted whey-face yeasty weather-bitten wagtail
For some more fun, the Shakespearean Insult Generator will 'technomagically'create one for you.
Here are some more super Shakespeare sources:
- Shakespeare Insults Dictionary
- Shakespeare Dictionary: A List of Troublesome Words
- Absolute Shakespeare Glossary
- William Shakespeare Elizabethan Dictionary
- The Elizabethan Insult: Or How to Cuss Like an Elizabethan Sailor
My insult: You spongy, clapper-clawed, hugger-mugger!
Why: I like some spittle, I love alliteration, and hugger-mugger just feels good getting out!
And, if you have time, here is a brief glimpse at some wonderfully saucy slings slung in Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing by two of my favorite actors:
So now it's your turn. Don't forget to leave a spicy slam in the comments.
For teachers here is a lesson suggestion for introducing Shakespeare's gifted wordplay:
- Divide your classroom into three groups and assign them one of the insult columns to each group.
- Have students from each group select their favorite curse word from their assigned column. Ask students to write and define their chosen word neatly on a large sheet of paper. Illustrating the word is encouraged.
- Set up the room with chairs rows of three chairs. Play Shakespeare's musical chairs (I suggest beating a drum as they randomly move up and down their row). See what whimsical insults fate deals you.
- Talk about what worked and what did not - what were your students' favorites/ least favorite insults. Talk about how Shakespeare played with language to 'coin' some of these terms.
- Read a selected snippets from the Bard and discuss his use of insults in the selected scenes.