Word of the DayWednesday, August 06, 2014
\tar-uh-DID-l\ , noun;
Informal. a small lie; fib.
Informal. pretentious nonsense.
Of course that's all taradiddle; he lies like a horse…
-- Fyodor Dostoyevsky, translated by Constance Garnett, Crime and Punishment, 1917
Biographers, who smile at the Shelleyan girls for putting faith in their brother's taradiddles about the Big Tortoise, are firm believers in his taradiddles about the monstrous and Venerable Serpent.
-- John Cordy Jeaffreson, The Real Shelley: New Views of the Poet's Life, 1885
Taradiddle builds on the term diddle, "to cheat or swindle" or "a deception," however, the origin of the first element, tara, is uncertain. It entered English in the late 1700s.
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