Tuesday, December 4, 2007


A finnimbrun is an obsolete word (my favorite kind!) for a (often rare) trinket or knick-knack. It is so obsolete that I can not even discover a consistent etymology and therefore reliable plural form of the word. Why do you care? Well, the fact of the matter is, there are many, many, many words in American vernacular that mean trinket or knick knack and these words actually already suffice without having to add finnimbrun to your vocabulary. So why should you? Why did I even welcome you to the world of finnimbrun?

It is because of the sound of the word. The bold faced rhythm of it. The creative fun you can have with making up new grammatical forms of it, like "Finnimbrunian" that are downright fantastic, even Tolkien, in their sound. Like a bunch of unflinching, relentless dwarves who slaved over their hammers to make exquisitely awful figurines to fill their cultured grandmother's house with semi-magical and well-crafted knick-knacks that she can't stand but has resignedly decided to decorate the back of her toilet with. It sounds like an adjective describing the astronomically (literally, not figuratively) unkempt house of Lady Aughra from the Dark Crystal you know the one, the woman with the one eye that you're sure was knocked out by one of her harrowingly fast, disregarded orreries that were the star of that famous, chaotic scene instead of her. It sounds like the collective noun for a team of mice that consequently you discovered running all over you like Reepicheep and his gang did all over Aslan before they learned the power of speech (and if you don't understand the last reference, what is wrong with you? Read the Chronicles of Narnia already, for yourself, if you really try, you can do it in one night).

Anyway, all my blathering is simply to say yes, you may say trinkets, you may say knick knacks, you may say tchotchkes, frou frou, bricka-brack, baubles, whatnot or junk, but Finnimbrun is much, much, much more fun to say.

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