Unbeknownst

Maybe it is because I have just become addicted to online scrabble games, playing against my phone but all I seem to see these days are weird words and strange combinations of spellings as I try to outwit my phone by using top scoring letters on triple letter or word scores. One word I doubt I would have space for is unbeknownst.

It is nevertheless a very pleasing word.  The meaning is simple – that a certain person is ignorant of a fact or action.

unbeknownst

Unbeknownst to Simon, his girlfriend planned a surprise birthday party.

 Unbeknownst to the public, most of the cast had food poisoning but managed to finish the show without any major difficulties.

 Checking on internet led me to various forums with writers vehemently denying use or existence of the word and many others defending it.  I tried to recall when I first saw it and it was probably in a novel.  It’s colourful old worldly style makes it a good addition to narratives but it would tend to be found in more formal, less casual work. There is a version, unbeknown, but I have preferred to use the version with –st. Corpus data rate it as seldom used but the number of contributors online who swore they use it regularly shows that it has its fans.

unbeknownst2

Poem from: picssr.com

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