Tag Archives: C

Covey

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Covey \ˈkə-vē\

noun: a mature bird or pair of birds with a brood of young; also : a small flock; Company, group

I’ve been editing a lot lately (hence the less-than-usual number of posts), and in my editing I’ve found some absolutely lovely words–not all of which were meant to be written. But, of course, that makes them all the more fun to find! The best kind of typo is an amazing-vocabulary-inducing typo–and such was covey.

Covey really is a lovely word–it even sounds lovely, like a pet name shared amongst friends. C’mon, coveys, let’s go! And that is actually a pretty good false use of this word–it’s indicative of a cozy little grouping of birds, or people, with a close relationship.

Aw, how sweet.

So, how to use it? How about:

The covey of friends never used their superpowers for evil, only for good.

Or:

Exploring my barn the other day, I found a covey of pigeons holed up in one of the rafters–I just hope the cat doesn’t find them!

So this wonderful word, where did it come from? It’s still pretty true to its original, literal, meaning, as it turns out–it was first used in the 14th century, back when everyone spoke Middle English and it meant “brood of partridges,” but before that it was French, covee (brood), and before that Gall-Romanic, cubata (hatchling), and before that Latin, cubare–to sit, incubate, or hatch.

So it’s always been a bird word. But one that’s definitely worth using! Whether or not it’s done intentionally.

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Qaid

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Qaid

noun: variant form of caid

Why, always, with these epic words? OK, fine, then:

Caid

…and so descends the wall of subscription-requiring content. This word is quite slippery. Well, fine, then, Merriam-Webster, I’ll go elsewhere:

Caid /kɑˈið, kaɪð/

noun: (in North Africa) a Muslim tribal chief, judge, or senior official.

I’ll be honest: there is one and only one reason that I know this word, and it is Words with Friends. I’ll be even more honest: I don’t even really know it from there, or at least I didn’t before I took a wild stab in the dark with a Q and a potentially very high-scoring word (48 points, anyone?).

To use it? Well, use it in Scrabble. Or Words with Friends. Or Bananagrams. You won’t be disappointed.

Oh, you mean you still want examples? OK, hm, how about:

Who does he think he is, a qaid or something? Give a guy a hall monitor position, and it all just goes straight to his head.

Or…nope, that’s just about it. Don’t know that it’s really possible to get too creative with this one.

Things I’ve learned about this word: the Internet hates it. So, courtesy of Wiktionary, here’s the most I can tell you about its etymology: it’s Arabic. Yup, that’s about it.

So, the takeaway: place QAID in Scrabble! Get lots of points! And, bonus, actually have an answer when your word stickler friends say “What does that even mean?” Then, hope they don’t ask you to use it in a sentence.