sedatephobia

Thomas1

Senior Member
polszczyzna warszawska
Hi,

Is this a legitimate English word please?

There are not more than 200 occurences of it on the Internet.

It is defined on some webpages as "fear of silence". However, I would expect a slightly different definition of it more or less a "fear of calm", but it may not be that important in the case of my question.

Thank you,
Tom
 
  • Gwan

    Senior Member
    New Zealand, English
    Well it's not in the Oxford English Dictionary, which is my gold standard for whether something's a real word :)
    On the other hand, you could argue that if people are using it - and evidently, it's been used on at least 200 occasions - it's a word. But probably not one that many people would know the meaning of. Looks like someone's just stuck two words together to me, but who knows?
     

    JoanTaber

    Senior Member
    English Northeast USA
    Advertisers agree with you. When I looked up sedatephobia on Dictionary.com, all sorts of popups offered me fast and effective anti-anxiety and anti-depression medications.

    We can stick a "phobia" on just about anything. When you ask about the legitimacy of a word, I'm not sure what you mean. In my book, if a new lexical construction is understood in the same way by both speaker and audience, it's legit.

    I expect, to consider your second concern, "sedatphobia" would mean "fear of tranquility," which would include silence as well as calmness.
     

    Thomas1

    Senior Member
    polszczyzna warszawska
    Thank you both!
    Advertisers agree with you. When I looked up sedatephobia on Dictionary.com, all sorts of popups offered me fast and effective anti-anxiety and anti-depression medications.

    We can stick a "phobia" on just about anything. When you ask about the legitimacy of a word, I'm not sure what you mean. In my book, if a new lexical construction is understood in the same way by both speaker and audience, it's legit.

    I expect, to consider your second concern, "sedatphobia" would mean "fear of tranquility," which would include silence as well as calmness.
    By legitimate I mean that it is used by people (like scientists) and appeares in literature/dictionaries. It is not in the OED, I also haven't found it conducting a Google book search. Though, I agree, that it may be a relatively new term that has not made it yet into written sources. It is also difficult to say if it is in common use, because this kind of word could be in common use only among specialists.

    The thing is that advertisers often make up words they need to use in commercials/ads but they are not really used outside them--should it be considered a legitimate word in such cases? I know not.

    As to the second matter, I would expect a more generic definition, but the term perhaps has had its meaning narrowed down.
     
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    ewie

    Senior Member
    English English
    The thing is that advertisers often make up words they need to use in commercials/ads but they are not really used outside them--should it be considered a legitimate word in such cases? I know not.
    Good point, Tom. My (personal) answer is I think not.

    There is a school of thought which says that all phobias, because -phobia is a Greek word, should have their first element derived from Greek as well.
    Of course, as you well know, English doesn't always work like that. We get all kinds of oddities ...
    ... but a phobia which is just an existing English word with -phobia shoved on the end is ... well, it's just an existing English word with -phobia shoved on the end.
     

    johndot

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Quite apart from anything else, the only way I can see to pronounce it is see-dayt-fo-bee-ya, and that sounds positively sickening, rather than sedentary.
     

    cuchuflete

    Senior Member
    EEUU-inglés
    I'm feeling far to tranquil to be troubled by this silly attempt at a neologism. No, it is not, in my highly unqualified opinion, a word currently in the English language. It's a combination of an English word and and English suffix from the Greek, held together by
    bailing wire and spit and a touch of pretense.
     

    Cagey

    post mod (English Only / Latin)
    English - US
    [How about ireniphobia? The Greek word irene (=peace) + the Greek suffix, phobia (=fear).

    This could mean "fear of peace", as opposed to war, or a "fear of peace" in a more general sense.

    I'm kidding, of course.]

    I agree that sedatephobia is neither useful nor well-formed.
     

    JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    I have to admit my first thought (well, before thinking about it, you know what I mean) was "Fear of being sedated". Not a good word, let's hope it doesn't catch on. However, this thread will now be added to the list of hits, and so it goes.....
     
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