Home > etymologies > Quacks, kooks, and crackpots, weirdos and weirdies, buffoons, imbeciles, morons and idiots

Quacks, kooks, and crackpots, weirdos and weirdies, buffoons, imbeciles, morons and idiots

From left to right: Sex offender and stalker Daniel Intermont, hyper obsessive cyberstalker and atheist Jimli Oxley
Art credits, from left to right: The Fool, by hellobaby, The Fool, by poisondlo

Where do these words come from and how did they get their meanings?

Quack (and quackery): http://www.authentichistory.com/1898-1913/2-progressivism/8-quackery/index.html, http://users.tinyonline.co.uk/gswithenbank/curiousq.htm, http://www.worldwidewords.org/qa/qa-qua1.htm

Kook: http://www.drbilllong.com/More2006/InsultsVII.html

Crackpot: http://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/crackpot.html

Weirdo: http://www.drbilllong.com/More2006/InsultsVII.html

Moron: http://listverse.com/2007/08/28/10-slang-words-and-phrases-explained, http://voices.yahoo.com/origin-word-moron-eugenics-racism-henry-474052.html, http://www.textkit.com/greek-latin-forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=8632, http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=moron, http://www.textkit.com/greek-latin-forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=8632

Idiots: http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=idiot

Dummy: Some might instantly think that this wasn’t even worth mentioning because the meaning would be so obvious: a wooden dummy being the meaning behind calling someone a dummy, which is what I thought, but wanting to give full coverage of common insults, and curious if anyone looked deep into the word, found out I was wrong (and forgot the word “dumb” in the King James version of the Bible I realized when reading the second website linked to the second link), http://oxforddictionaries.com/definition/dummy, http://www.dailywritingtips.com/numskulls-noodles-and-nincompoops, http://www.innovateus.net/innopedia/what-meaning-nincompoop

Buffoon: http://www.word-detective.com/2011/12/02/buffoon

Imbecile: http://web.archive.org/web/20100718113934/http://www.bfi.org.uk/education/teaching/disability/further/negative.html, http://clir.pacscl.org/2011/01/10/idiots-imbeciles-and-morons http://www.omg-facts.com/view/Facts/6513

Dunce: http://holidayinsights.com/moreholidays/November/dunceday.htm, http://iteadthomam.blogspot.com/2011/02/origin-of-word-dunce.html

By the way: while looking up these words, I ended up on Codelphia.com due to Google having an outdated lookup for the word “kook”, and while looking for the now gone definition, saw the word libertine defined on top. I learned, with some deduction of my own, that it used to mean a person who was freed from Roman slavery, but later freethinkers (often associated with atheists) started referred to themselves as such, and then Christians associated the word libertine with those who were immoral/without morals, and then though maybe that that was where the word “liberal” may have come from. I came across this interesting site on the meaning of “freedom” while doing research to see if I was right. Was my guess right?

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