Ever wanted to go back to college for the day? Don’t miss: 3 top lecturers in Baltimore

Matthew Arnold

In a word: crotchet

Each week The Sun's John McIntyre presents a moderately obscure but evocative word with which you may not be familiar — another brick to add to the wall of your working vocabulary. This week's word:


Writers on language and usage are notorious for their crotchets, grooming their pet peeves in public.

Crotchet (pronounced CROTCH-it) comes into English from the French crochet, "hook" or "crook." In early uses the word identified a small hook, as for a brooch, and came to have wider uses, including an instrument in obstetrical surgery, a square...