TWG’s Hall of Ugliness

Hall of Ugliness

Some words are too ugly for your readers’ eyes, even when they are used correctly. As we come across these offenders, we will induct them into The Writing Guide’s Hall of Ugliness. The initial inductee into the HOU is liaise.

Merriam-Webster defines the intransitive verb this way: “chiefly British 1: to establish liaison 2: to act as a liaison officer.”

Oh, this is a terrible word. Not only is it a monstrous weapon of bureaucratic-language warlords, but it sounds simply awful when you say it aloud: liaise. It sounds like a combination of lice and mayonnaise.

Please, for your readers’ sake and mine, refrain from using this word.

2 Responses to “TWG’s Hall of Ugliness”
  1. achanlin says:

    Dear Editor,

    I hereby nominate the following words for appointment to The Writing Guide’s Hall of Ugliness:


    I’m this close to nominating “diaspora” as well, but I need to let that one stew a little longer…

    Kind Regards,
    Amanda Hanlin

  2. Pat says:

    I strenuously object to the nomination of “harangue.” But I’m for “diaspora.”

    Also: lice and mayonnaise? Damn, man. Just damn.

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