Dumbfound (and others…)

We had quite a few good suggestions today, so people can use dumbfound or they can use one of the others, which are: explore, astonishment, imagination, climate, provoke or phosphorescence…

I really like the word ‘dumbfound’ which is a mixture of dumb (not able to speak) and confound, which means to surprise or confuse someone. So it’s like you are speechless and confused. The word was invented in about 1650 (so Shakespeare would never have used the word as he died in 1616) but was hardly ever used until about 1850 – and it has been used more and more since then. The word ‘dumb’ and the word ‘confound’ are both very old words, much older than ‘dumbfound’ but they were used together until about 1650.

Dumbfound: greatly astonish or amaze…

  1. I was dumbfounded when I saw how difficult the test was!
  2. If you do a brilliant magic trick you could dumbfound your teacher 🙂

anticipate – equivalent – exquisite

Anticipate: means to expect something or predict something…

1. I anticipate that it will rain tomorrow.

Equivalent: means the same as…

1. 2/8 is equivalent to 1/4.

2. Running six times round the school field is equivalent to running a mile.

Exquisite: means really beautiful and delicate…

1. The necklace was absolutely exquisite.


Devour (devoured or devouring) came from Mrs Wild’s class this week. It is a verb and it has a couple of shades of meaning…

1. To eat (food or prey) hungrily or quickly.

2. To read quickly and eagerly.

So I could say:

  • “I was so hungry that I devoured my meal in ten seconds!”
  • ” I love reading so I tend to devour a book in an evening if I am really enjoying it…”
  • ” The fire seemed to be devouring the house; it burned so quickly.”

Let’s see what you can come up with 🙂


The word of the week this week is ‘desolate’ chosen by Y3 Kidd.

It is an interesting word as it has different shades of meaning. It is an adjective so it describes a thing or a feeling.

1. It means, somewhere that is empty and where things and people don’t live. So you could perhaps look at a place and say it was desolate if it looked empty and abandoned.

2. Desolate also means feeling miserable and unhappy

Why not google ‘desolate’ and see the other shades of meaning.