Late yesterday afternoon, while strolling through the wide avenues of the Web, I happened into a new English word I had never had the pleasure of knowing. At first I thought it was Latin, or something like that. The word was used by an exquisite blogger from the Philippines who has a knack for weaving emotional words.
The name of the new kid on the block is “nefelibata” borrowed from a foreign language. The definition of this obscure word of the English language is: “A cloud walker; One who lives in the cloud of their own imagination or dreams, or one who does not abide by the precepts of society, literature, or art; An unconventional, unorthodox person.” The word is pronounced ne-fe-LE-ba-ta.
Nefelibata is a Portuguese word derived from “nephele” (cloud) and “batha” (a place where you can walk), thus the definition of one who walks or lives in the clouds. I have several friends who match this definition of nefelibata.
According to Akshay Dashore…
It actually sounds like a synonym for maverick, but I think one would take umbrage if you called them a maverick. This word actually minces the severity and intensity veiled in the word maverick and thus can be used as a euphemism for it. Besides maverick, it can also be used in lieu of all the other words that insinuate ‘unorthodox’ behavior. There is also an inconspicuous beauty hidden in the word which gets unfurled when you enunciate it.
Nefelibata can have a positive as well as a negative connotation.
A creative person, who remains embroiled in his/her imaginations, transcending all the conventions and laws, could be called as a nefelibata. But also, an intractable person who stays involved in insignificant things, too, could be called as a nefelibata. Its usage completely depends upon the activity in which the person is involved.
a. “I was trying to teach him the basics, but he, being a nefelibata, didn’t give heed to my words.”
b. “We all knew that nefelibata would do something big in his life, and here he is, juggling multiple businesses.”
I’m sure you can come up with other uses for this uncommon English word. If you by any chance encounter this word in your linguistics sojourns, you already know what it means.
When I recalled my recent blog post about the use of the number of spaces at the end of a sentence, and my rebellious attitude of using two spaces instead of one—contradicting the English experts—; I guess that would place me in the category of a nefelibata.
As you can see, English is a weird language with many tricks, twists and turns. Good Day.
Source: Unused Words – Discover a new word everyday!