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Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for August 14, 2021 is:
scuttlebutt SKUTT-ul-butt noun
Scuttlebutt is an informal noun that refers to rumor or gossip.
// After he retired, Bob regularly stopped by the office to catch up on the latest scuttlebutt.
“There’s always a bit of scuttlebutt when a talented chef leaves a popular restaurant to pursue another opportunity.” — Ligaya Figueras, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 29 Apr. 2021
Did you know?
When office workers catch up on the latest scuttlebutt around the water cooler, they are continuing a long-standing tradition that probably also occurred on the sailing ships of yore. Back in the early 1800s, the cask containing a ship’s daily supply of fresh water was called a scuttlebutt (from the verb scuttle meaning “to cut a hole through” and the noun butt, “cask”); that name was later applied to a drinking fountain on a ship or at a naval installation. In time, the term for the water source was also applied to the gossip and rumors generated around it, and the latest chatter has been called “scuttlebutt” ever since.