1 EAGLETON NOTES: Who Can Mong?

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Wednesday, 19 December 2018

Who Can Mong?

I recently came across a website entitled "Drinkmonger".  It mongs, principally, alcoholic beverages.  Interestingly I can never recall the term drinkmonger ever being used before.

However we have fishmonger, ironmonger (who does not sell iron), cheesemonger and I can recall that, in my youth, in the market we had a costermonger (who sold fresh fruit and vegetables) who also had a barrow which went round the streets. 

We also have rumourmongers, fearmongers and scaremongers.

So why do we not have shoemongers, clothesmongers, breadmongers, cakemongers, sweetmongers, tobaccomongers and peacemongers and so on and so forth?

37 comments:

  1. "It mongs, principally, alcoholic beverages." Surely you meant to write "means" instead of "mongs"? Please feel free to make the necessary correction and then delete this comment. Don't worry. We all make mistakes.

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    1. YP, I did actually use the word "Mong" as a verb intentionally but with my tongue in my cheek. I had checked and it doesn't appear in my OED as a verb however, it does appear on Google (where else?) as a verb: "A monger is a seller, especially of something specific like a fish monger or an iron monger. You can use the noun monger as a word on its own, although it frequently shows up as a suffix, in words like cheesemonger. Monger can also be used as a verb meaning "to sell or peddle."

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    2. Graham, the lad hasn't left school yet. Give him a break. At least he hasn't mentioned sperm banks.

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  2. For what it's worth, monger could be going out of the English language???

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    1. Red, I think it's well on its way into history.

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  3. It's a grand word that I would love to see promoted. Motormonger, Meatmonger sound good, maybe vicars could be Moralsmongers and the EU could be Migrantmongers.

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    1. PS. May I add conjuror as a Magicmonger.

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    2. Adrian, perhaps we should form a society for the promotion of old words.

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    3. Yes an excellent idea. I like the verb to mong. I love crucified language. Roger Mcgough,is good but the best is Lewis Carroll.
      I used to like the Caribbean, their ability to run bastardised French into vague English and back again with a dash of Spanish in one sentence was a delight.. Sewer, Mister dindunuffin onest. Que Mi!. When confronted with irrefutable evidence to the contrary. How could anyone be cross with them. I used to manage as dindunuffin was what they were best at.

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  4. There've been a few Warmongers around in recent times.

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    1. Cro, how on earth did I miss that one: probably the most frequently used these days.

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  5. Are us bloggers wordmongers then?

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    1. We are indeed, Meike. Either that or 'wordsmiths.'

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  6. My faithful OLD (Collins 1972) dictionary has the word as momger n. a trader,a dealer usually in compound words .... I think that you are a rhetorical questionmonger.

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    1. Sorry. Still cant get used to my new glasses. MN too close together.

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  7. No monging here
    Good word for a hot toddie though

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  8. YAY to old words! And bring back "monger"... do! I'm all for drinkmongering... and how's about cuddlemonger, kissmonger, hugmonger, snugglemonger, and snogmonger? Feastmonger! Moviemonger! I, myself, am a fully trained, card-carrying Withnailmonger! http://wall-o-withnail.blogspot.com/

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  9. Did somebody say drink? Cheers!☺ I will have to ask my son about drinkmonger,he writes for the Beer Connoisseur magazine, perhaps he could be considered one.

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    1. Cheers, Kay. And thank you. The message was delivered.

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  10. 'Tis an interesting point you bring up, Graham. Now it will be playing around in my mind for the rest of the day!! :)

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  11. You lot must have a lot of time on your hands this morning!! You’re all mad as a box of frogs!! My son is the beermonger in our neck of the woods, I’m more of your red winemonger myself.

    Happy Chrimbomongering to all of you.
    Beverley

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    1. You probably have a point there, Beverley, there's a few of us who are fairly bonkers.

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  12. In my yute (60 years ago) here in The States (your former colonies) a very popular word in a certain crowd was "whoremonger" although I haven't heard it in years....

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    1. Well, RWP, I have a feeling that I have heard the term 'whoremongering' applied to politicians although I'm not quite in what context.

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  13. I think I've only come across fishmonger and ironmonger, but never the separate word "monger" (until I looked it up now). Interestingly, it makes me recall that we have a similar word in Swedish, which must have the same roots, but that has also pretty much fallen out of use nowadays: "månglare". When I look that up in a Swedish dictionary, I get the explanation that in (old) Swedish it refers to a person selling things "on the street" i.e. without having their own shop. So in Sweden too we had "fishmongers" (fiskmånglare); but also "street mongers" (gatumånglare) - not as in selling streets, but various stuff on the street.

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    1. Yes, Monica, we would call someone selling on the street a 'street trader or seller' (or, depending on circumstances a hawker or pedlar).

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  14. hmm interesting post - isn't the word monger quite an old fashioned term?

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    1. Yes, Amy, it is an old-fashioned term in the main.

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  15. I'm quite sure the correct form is "mongers" not "mongs". Sorry to be a kill sports, but I just love words, old and new, ancient or modern - call me wordmonger all you like - and your title "Who can mong?" just hit a sore spot. "Who can monger?" I'd prefer. But as a non-native speaker I am not sure I'm right.
    By the way Merry Christmas!

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    1. Uglemor, I am a native speaker, been speaking the mother tongue for nearly 78 years now. Mong is the verb and monger is the noun, one who mongs. Trust me on this one.

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    2. Thanks, RWP, I had forgotten to respond to that comment. I agree with you absolutely. My usage was correct.

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    3. I bow to your superior years and wisdom. But I'm sad to inform you that the big Random House/Webster's Dictionary on my table agrees with me. So to be a truhtmonger, you'll both have to learn to monger the truth.

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    4. Uglemor, The Randon House version is a US version. I live in the UK and speak British English.

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