Posted by: victanguera | February 22, 2012

Word Wednesday #1

In an ongoing effort to actually post on the blog again, I thought I’d introduce some new “features”. This is part prompt, part word-love, part etymology. I’ll post a word that tickles me for this week. Do with it what you’d like. Create a scene using the word as a jumping off point. Make a mind-map, drawing out all the connections and ideas that word sparks in your mind. Who knows what that might lead to. Or just read the word and ponder it’s meaning and origin.

When I read Women In Love by D.H. Lawrence, I noticed he had a tendency to overuse words. Maybe it showed up more as I read it on my phone, but the word inchoate would appear again and again in one page. And I had no idea what it actually meant, so had to look it up. It’s actually quite a nice word. As long as you don’t overuse it like he did. Well, and improperly use, as he used it to describe someone’s eyes, and I’m thinking those aren’t improperly formed or only partly in existence. At least one would hope not. Squick factor!



[in-koh-it, -eyt or, especially Brit., in-koh-eyt] Show IPA


1. not yet completed or fully developed; rudimentary.
2. just begun; incipient.
3. not organized; lacking order: an inchoate mass of ideas on the subject.


adj \in-ˈkō-ət, ˈin-kə-ˌwāt\

Definition of INCHOATE

: being only partly in existence or operation : incipient; especially : imperfectly formed or formulated : formless, incoherent <misty, inchoate suspicions that all is not well with the nation — J. M. Perry>
in·cho·ate·ly adverb
in·cho·ate·ness noun

Examples of INCHOATE

  1. <inchoate feelings of affection for a man whom she had, up till now, thought of as only a friend>

Origin of INCHOATE

Latin inchoatus, past participle of inchoare to start work on, perhaps from in- + cohumpart of a yoke to which the beam of a plow is fitted

First Known Use: 1534


  1. …as in, my writing skills are inchoate?

    Thank you for introducing me to this fabulous word 🙂

    • My writing as well. So we aren’t pantsers, we are inchoate writers. I like that much better.

      • yup, definitely helps to pin a fancy label on it 😉

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