Via Mutantfrog and Ralph Luker, I found the Compendium of Lost Words, OED entries which have fallen out of use. Here are my nominations for "words we need now more than ever (except the last one)." I have replaced the original sample sentences with ones more relevant to modern life, to give a sense of just how useful these words might be.
- A through E
- agonarch n 1656 -1656
judge of a contest or activity
I've often wondered how I could get a job as a Reality TV agonarch.
- aquabib n 1731-1883
Since I gave up coffee, I've become a boring aquabib, but my seltzer budget has skyrocketed.
- caprizant adj 1730 -1736
of the pulse, uneven or irregular
Syncopation in music is much more fun than caprizant EKGs.
- circuland n 1821 -1821
that which is to be circulated
Most of what we call "memes" -- internet quizzes and the like -- we really should call "circulands" because they're not just free-floating ideas but are deliberately spread by "tagging."
- F through M
- hymnicide n 1862 -1862
killing of hymns through alterations
Modern churches seem to have no alternative to hymnicide, as newer liturgical music is often even worse than modifications to older stuff.
- jobler n 1662 -1662
one who does small jobs
One of the problems of academia is over-production of PhDs, leading to a proliferation of joblers.
- modernicide n 1774 -1774
killing or killer of modern people
Many anti-intellectual movements -- Khmer Rouge, jihadists, etc. -- engage in modernicide as policy.
- N through R
- odynometer n 1889 -1893
instrument for measuring pain
Without an odynometer, doctors must rely on patients' subjective reporting.
- phlyarologist n 1867 -1867
one who talks nonsense
So many bloggers are phlyarologists that I fear for the future of humanity.
- pudify v 1656 -1656
to cause to be ashamed
Though he had a respectable professional identity, he knew the revelation of his "sex-life/weight-loss" blog would pudify him.
- S through Z
- quibbleism n 1836 -1836
practice of quibbling
Among bloggers, many heated debates devolve into quibbleism, particularly linguistic.
- schismarch n 1657 -1657
founder of a schism
There are no mediocre schismarchs, I think: either they are wildly successful and their followers venerate them for generations, or they are short-lived, pitiable failures.
- speustic adj 1656 -1658
made or baked in haste
Much of my cooking is speustic, and modern prefabricated food and cooking ingredients make it easier than ever.
- stagma n 1681 -1820
any distilled liquor
Though we are a long way past legal Temperance, and beer and wine are common accompaniments to food, there is still a stigma to stagma, particularly unmixed.
- tortiloquy n 1656 -1656
The trick to political speechwriting is to clothe tortiloquy in hallowed images and insulate promises with conditions.
- uglyography n 1804 -1834
bad handwriting; poor spelling
My policy is to take off points for uglyography only when it thoroughly obscures the meaning of the text.
- vampirarchy n 1823 -1823
set of rulers comparable to vampires
I think vampirarchy is a much better description for our current administration than kleptocracy, because it is something inherent in their nature, rather than a character flaw, which is draining us dry.
- venialia n 1654 -1654
minor sins or offences
We have replaced the traditional venalia -- dishonesty, cupidity, lechery -- with modern flaws such as "failure to diet," "impolitic expression" and "slow responder to electronic communications."
- weequashing n 1888 -1902
spearing of fish or eels by torchlight from canoes
I suspect that weequashing is today more common among Pacific Island cultures than it is among Atlantic coastal communities.