Word Up

Wowzers. I just came across a doozy.

Like a lot of nerdy types, I like to find weird words. This morning, I hit one that was absolutely new to me.

I’m re-reading Brendan Pietsch’s terrific 2015 book Dispensational Modernism. In it, Pietsch makes a powerful argument that the ways early fundamentalist thinkers crafted their theology was not old at all, but profoundly new.

I’ve read it before, but now that I’m revising and polishing my Fundamentalist U manuscript, I want to walk through his book one more time to see if I need to chuck, polish, and/or revise my argument.

And there it was! Smack-dab in the middle of Pietsch’s description of the roots of the Niagara Bible Conferences on page 46:


“Gyrovague”…! How bout it, SAGLRROILYBYGTH? Without looking it up, can anyone offer a definition?…a guess?

I couldn’t.

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  1. Let’s have a game of Balderdash!

    gyrovague: a person who vaguely gyrates when the Holy Ghost comes upon them

    • Heh! I’ve now looked it up. It might be one of my new favorite words.

      • I know, right? I’m surprised people don’t use it more often. And I went and looked up “Balderdash.” The game, that is. It looks like a lot of fun.

  2. Donald Byrne

     /  April 6, 2017

    itinerant, someone who goes around doing what they do at various locations. gyro = “around” in Greek, and I think vagus is from Latin, “wander” or something like that. So my final answer here is “itinerant preacher”

  3. Not fully committing to eating the greek sandwich with lamb meat you ordered.

    • I learned I had to be extremely gyro-specific when I ordered mine. Yes tomatoes and that white sauce, no red onions.

  4. Agellius

     /  April 6, 2017

    No clue until I looked it up.

  5. bmpietsch

     /  April 6, 2017

    I think we’ve all learned a lesson today, kids. Friends don’t let friends drink and thesaurus.

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