A word formed by merging the sounds and meanings of two or more other words or word parts. Also known as a portmanteau word.
One common type of blend is a full word followed by a word part (called a splinter), as in motorcade (motor + cavalcade).
- Blends: Practice in Identifying Word Parts
- Compound Adjective, Compound Noun, and Compound Verb
- Where Do New Words Come From?
- Word Formation
- Words at Play: An Introduction to Recreational Linguistics
Examples and Observations:
- agitprop (agitation + propaganda)
- alcopop (alcohol + pop)
- bash (bat + mash)
- biopic (biography + picture)
- Breathalyzer (breath + analyzer)
- camcorder (camera + recorder)
- chexting (cheating + texting)
- clash (clap + crash)
- cosmeceutical (cosmetic + pharmaceutical)
- docudrama (documentary + drama)
- electrocute (electricity + execute)
- emoticon (emote + icon)
- faction (fact + fiction)
- fanzine (fan + magazine)
- flare (flame + glare)
- flirtationship (flirting + relationship)
- glimmer (gleam + shimmer)
- Globish (global + English)
- guitarthritis (guitar + arthritis)
- infotainment (information + entertainment)
- moped (motor + pedal)
- palimony (pal + alimony)
- pornacopia (pornography + cornucopia)
- pulsar (pulse + quasar)
- sexcapade (sex + escapade)
- sexploitation (sex + exploitation)
- sitcom (situation + comedy)
- slanguage (slang + language)
- smash (smack + mash)
- sportscast (sports + broadcast)
- stagflation (stagnation + inflation)
- staycation (stay home + vacation)
- telegenic (television + photogenic)
- textpectation (text message + expectation)
- workaholic (work + alcoholic)
- "The useful term globaloney [global + baloney] was coined by none other than Claire Booth Luce. What she had in mind was gaseous talk about geopolitics, but the term applies equally well to the way many modern pundits ascribe everything that happens in the world to the vaguely defined impacts of the global economy."
(Paul Krugman, The Accidental Theorist: And Other Dispatches From the Dismal Science. W.W. Norton, 1998)
- "When a man fell into his anecdotage it was a sign for him to retire from the world."
(Benjamin Disraeli, Lothair, 1870)
- "His attention was directed to them by his host jocosely, and he accepted them seriously as they drank in jocoserious silence Epps's massproduct, the creature cocoa."
(James Joyce, Ulysses, 1922)
- "[Barack Obama is] a hope-ronaut. He's in a rarefied level of hope where the rest of us have to take tanks up with us."
(Stephen Colbert, Entertainment Weekly, Oct. 3, 2008)
- Hispandering: manipulating one's rhetoric or actions to court Hispanic voters.
- "Blending is an area of word formation where cleverness can be rewarded by instant popularity: sexploitation from the seventies, the Chunnel from the eighties are common words now. . . . [U]npleasant as the phenomena they describe, the words guesstimate, testilying, pagejacking, spamouflage, compfusion, and explornography will probably elicit a smile."
(R. P. Stockwell and D. Minkova, English Words. Cambridge Univ. Press, 2001)