[[quoteright:350:[[Webcomic/ToothpasteForDinner http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/keep-using-that-fancy-word_4940.gif]]]]

->'''Amy:''' Cornucopia. What a mellifluous word.\\
'''Sheldon:''' Let's make that our word of the day.\\
'''Amy:''' Agreed. And we'll use mellifluous tomorrow.
-->-- ''Series/TheBigBangTheory'', "The Desperation Emanation"

Ever suspect that an author has a quirky Word-of-the-Day Calendar? Some really {{egregious}}, often [[SesquipedalianLoquaciousness sesquipedalian]], word appears in the text, perhaps not used in a completely natural way, and perhaps used in a manner egregiously inconsistent with the character's native idiolect. It appears two or three more times in subsequent egregious text, in in-[[SelfDemonstratingArticle egregious]]-creasingly unlikely settings and then is never seen again.

If it ''does'' get used more consistently than that, it overlaps with AuthorCatchphrase.

This is mostly a literary trope. Although there are examples wherever a single author has a distinguishable voice (or is just plain verbose), shows and movies are usually expensive enough to produce that this gets filtered out, not to mention that [[ViewersAreMorons TV and movie audiences supposedly have all the vocabulary of the average toddler anyhow]].

Compare this to PerfectlyCromulentWord, where fictitious words are inserted in an attempt to sound smart, {{Malaproper}}, where similar-sounding words are used in the place of others and DelusionsOfEloquence, where the words do exist but are misused in an attempt to sound smart.

[[ReviewerStockPhrases Reviewers seem to use this trope en masse.]]

MagicFranchiseWord is when this is done by the fans.



[[folder:Comic Books]]
* ''Creator/MarvelComics'':
** Someone at Marvel really liked [[ComicBook/{{Venom}} symbiote]] as a word.
* ''ComicBook/AmbushBug'': ADVANTAGEOUS!
* Creator/AlanMoore apparently loves to have his characters say "apparently". Incidentally, he is also a big fan of the term "incidentally". He uses it instead of "by the way" whenever possible.
* Elongated Man makes note of this phenomenon in an issue of ''Formerly Known as the Franchise/{{Justice League|OfAmerica}}.''

[[folder:Fan Works]]
* There's a ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion'' fanfic (''Fanfic/NeonGenesisEvangelionR'', if memory serves correctly) where Rei's eyes were always being referred to as "alazarin". Alizarin (or "alizarin crimson") happens to be a deep bluish-red pigment -- and probably the true color of Rei's eyes, at that. But it still looks like fanfic thesaurusitis. (There's an entire family of dyes/pigments called "alizarine <color name>". The actual compound known simply as "alizarin", though, is a pretty good match for Rei's eyes.)
* ''Fanfic/TheRebuildOfNobodyDies'' really likes the word "warble".
* In the 1990s, almost every other story featuring Tom Paris from ''Series/StarTrekVoyager'' called his blue eyes "cerulean". Cerulean eyes in story after story. Worst part: cerulean is a specific shade of blue, and his eyes aren't that shade.
* In ''Franchise/{{Pokemon}}'' fanfic, Misty's eyes are often "cerulean" as well. They're blue-green, so it's accurate enough, but the ''real'' reason is that her gym is located in Cerulean City.
* Harry Potter Turns to the Lord: There were demons embezzled in Harry's soul.
** Unless he'd stolen the demons, also a YouKeepUsingThatWord. Did the Infernal Revenue Service ever catch him?
* ''Fanfic/MyImmortal'': Those limpid tears. ''Statistically''
** Sexily.
* There used to be a sample from some unknown fanfic -- not the legendary ''Literature/TheEyeOfArgon''; this one is [[UpToEleven even worse]] -- being circulated and mocked on the Net which had prose so purple that it was practically unreadable; unfortunately, all the pages containing it seem to have disappeared. To give an inkling of what it was like: it referred to someone's eyes with the word "syndicates:" "syndicate" -> "circle" -> "orb" -> "eye."
* The authors of ''FanFic/UndocumentedFeatures'' are overly fond of the word "sardonic", which they seem to use to describe every third facial expression.
* Several characters in the Literature/LordOfTheRings fanfic ''FanFic/TheCaptainAndTheKing'' are extremely concerned about Gondor's "weal."
* Rise Of The Tau, an otherwise [[FanficRecs/{{Warhammer40000}} awesome]] fic, uses the various tenses of "thunder" and "coruscate" way too much. One sentence even had 'two' occurrences of "thundered" in it.
** Not to mention the amount of times the author uses brace instead of two or a pair.
* The entire ''Series/DoctorWho'' fandom has a perennial love affair with the words "gravitas", "pantomime" and "nadir".
* It seems practically blasphemy NOT to describe Yugi's eyes as "amethyst-colored orbs." The ''Anime/YuGiOh'' fanfiction-writing fandom was particularly fond of its overuse of the word "orb." Dear GOD it was fond of it...
* Many of Creator/HansVonHozel's fanfics use "danube" ''as a verb''.
* Though certainly not a particularly bad offender, one of the later arcs of the ''Franchise/{{Pokemon}}'' fic ''FanFic/LatiasJourney'' uses the word "piscene" a few times for some reason.
* Read enough {{lemon}}s and it won't be long before you get sick of [[http://szaleniec1000.livejournal.com/tag/ministrations "ministrations".]]
* The self-published "tribute novel"-slash-sequel to ''Literature/{{Twilight}}'' book ''Breaking Dawn'' got the unfortunate title ''Russet Noon''. Russet is a PerfectlyCromulentWord, but since it's most commonly associated with a breed of potatoes (or apples in the UK), this became a source of great mocking.
* The English translation of ''FanFic/KnightOfLolicon'' ''really'' likes the word "fulminating". Possibly {{Justified| Trope}} in that the translation, while readable, is mediocre at best, so it may sound more natural in the original Spanish.
* Parodied in the ''Manga/DeathNote'' fic ''FanFic/TheHumanWhoseNameIsWrittenInThisFanfiction'':
-->"This is apparently what people do when they like each other; they list the physical attributes of the other person using creative metaphors. L so happens to describe Light more like a pastry than an attractive young college student. Readers are supposed to accept this because L likes sweets." And "Misa sniffed, her sapphire eyes wet with tears and her ruby lips shaking (because Misa can only be described using gemstones)."
* Almost every time the sky comes up in ''FanFic/FrigidWindsAndBurningHearts'', it's described with the word "welkin".
* Possible example in ''Super FanFic/PaperMarioX'': Child found the word "rigmarole" hilarious and she got Link to bring it up without making it seem awkward.

* "Abomination" in ''Disney/LiloAndStitch''. He's a killer Space-Dropbear! He warrants it! "Imagine, if you will..." also gets used several times in the DVD commentary.
* The climax of the Oscar-nominated Israeli film ''Footnote'' is built around this trope.

* At different times while writing the lengthy ''Literature/{{Redwall}}'' series, Brian Jacques seemed to find some love in characters "saluting ''smartly''", performing "traditional [species]" gestures (strange because these gestures hadn't been described as traditional in previous books at all), and of course the ever-mystifying word "chunnering". [[note]]"Chunnering" is slang in the north west of England, Jacques's place of origin, for ceaselessly talking while nobody is listening.[[/note]]
* Creator/AlanDeanFoster with book names such as "Phylogenesis".
** Go through Foster's novelization of ''Franchise/StarWars'' some time (the byline says "Creator/GeorgeLucas", but Foster wrote it). Count the number of times gauges -- or something else, but usually gauges -- whine in protest.
* StephenDonaldson, as a Doctor of English, uses some pretty arcane words frequently. The narrator's use of "argent" and "lambent" come to mind. It might be possible to identify a specific year of a specific Word-of-the-Day Calendar with each of Donaldson's books. Good-naturedly covered at ''[[http://www.gdiproductions.net/srdamd/ Stephen R. Donaldson Ate My Dictionary.]]''
** Notoriously, at one point in ''The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant'' he describes some creatures as being "featureless and telic, like lambent gangrene."
** Some passages suggest that this was a deliberate stylistic choice to emphasize the surreal nature of the Land.
** Nick Lowe's essay ''[[http://news.ansible.co.uk/plotdev.html The Well-Tempered Plot Device]]'' describes the sport of "Clench Racing" in Donaldson novels.
* The narrator of M. John Harrison's recent science fiction novel ''Literature/{{Light}}'' uses the word "ruched" several times, among others. There's also 'etiolated'?
* In several of Ross Macdonald's LewArcher stories, written in different decades, the Shakespearean phrase "alarums and excursions" is spoken, each by a different character, none of whom would naturally use this phrase. The first couple of times it is misspelled as "alarms and excursions".
* Rex Stout, creator of gourmand-turned-P.I. Literature/NeroWolfe, made a point of using a few unfamiliar words in every Wolfe story or novel he wrote; the words would usually be utilized by Wolfe himself or his business partner, Archie Goodwin. Given, however, that Wolfe likes to flaunt his intellect in true [[Creator/AgathaChristie Hercule Poirot]] fashion, Stout may have been doing this as character development - at least when Wolfe does it. When Archie Goodwin does it, it occasionally approaches SophisticatedAsHell.
** One novel has Wolfe identifying the author of a piece of text by how often particular words show up.
** In one early novel, all the characters are 'ejaculating' all over the place. As in, exclaiming. Very much a case of HaveAGayOldTime.
* Creator/GeneWolfe uses many obscure words, real and otherwise, particularly in Literature/TheBookOfTheNewSun. The obscure, but real, word 'tribadist' (lesbian) appears next to the word 'algophilist' (from context, one who enjoys inflicting pain on another, but somehow different from sadist). [[http://www.sex-lexis.com/Sex-Dictionary/algophilia Algophilia,]] by the way.
** In a nice bit of LampshadeHanging, the narrator says this about his teacher: "He mispronounced quite common words: urticate, salpinx, bordereau." What's more, if you look up the meanings, they are words that it would be reasonable for the character in question to know.
* OlderThanTelevision: Bram Stoker, ''Literature/{{Dracula}}'', and the word "voluptuous," making this one older than word-of-the-day calendars.
** "Voluptuous" was also a commonly abused word in Victorian Era erotica, for obvious reasons.
* Creator/MaryShelley likes to use the words "benevolent," "wretch," and "countenance" in ''Literature/{{Frankenstein}}''.
* The ''Literature/TairenSoul'' books and "claiming".
* Creator/ChinaMieville:
** He uses the word "concatenate" and its derivatives too often in ''Literature/IronCouncil''. It only comes up a few times, but it's such an unusual word that it stands out.
** There's also his frequent use of "puissant". His entire brain appears to be an Author Vocabulary Calendar, to the extent that it requires a dictionary -- a large dictionary -- to tell which words are obscure technical terms, which ones are Britishisms, and which ones he made up out of whole cloth. If there aren't a dozen five-dollar words on the page -- you're probably looking at the title page.
** Miéville uses tons of very obscure words to describe landscapes. If you've taken a few geology classes, you'll know most of these (and that they're [[YouKeepUsingThatWord not always correct]]), but you've never seen as many instances of words like "graben" or "arete". Most notable in ''Iron Council''.
** ''Literature/PerdidoStreetStation'' contains a remarkable number of things which are "jagged" or "jags" of some material, also, four things being described as "inchoate" is about three things too many for one book.
* Creator/EEDocSmith of ''Literature/{{Lensman}}'' fame does this with words like "lambent", "coruscating", etc.
* Creator/HPLovecraft had a reputation for this. Some words commonly associated with him include: "cyclopean" (though that does refer to a [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyclopean_masonry specific type of architecture]]), "eldritch", "gambrel" (used to describe a two-sided roof with two slopes on each side), "squamous" (scaly), "rugose" (ridged), "gibbous" (humped), "chthonic" (living in the ground), "charnel" (relating to dead bodies), "non-Euclidean", "Paleogean", "ululation" (a drawn-out, high-pitched, warbling moan or howl), and "demoniac", though how much he actually used such words [[http://cthulhuchick.com/wordcount-lovecraft-favorite-words/ is exaggerated]]. Lovecraft was also attached to the noun "vigintillion," which crops up in both ''Literature/TheDunwichHorror'' and ''The Call of Cthulhu'', and means either 10^63 or 10^120.
** Creator/CharlesStross parodied this in ''[[Literature/TheLaundrySeries The Atrocity Archives]]'', where "squamous and rugose" is apparently a RunningGag in the house Bob Howard shares with Pinky and the Brain.
** Also parodied in the ''TabletopGame/{{Munchkin}}'' card game, where the words are Monster Enhancement cards, featuring a creature described by the card's adjective and a munchkin looking the word up in a dictionary.
* More excusable than some, Tad Williams came up with the Greek-derived term 'pentecount' (referring to a unit of fifty) for ''Literature/{{Shadowmarch}}'' and uses it quite frequently.
* Creator/LoisMcMasterBujold describes approximately two characters per book as "saturnine" -- generally, whoever is being the deadpan foil to Miles at the time. The "saturnine" is to emphasize the deadpan. She also uses "dour" a lot. And "waft". "Suasion" and "ingenuous" (as opposed to ''per''suasion and ''dis''ingenuous) she uses less commonly, but the latter is rare and the former almost nonexistent with anybody else.
* ''Literature/BraveNewWorld'' considers ''everything'' "pneumatic": an overstuffed chair cushion is a "pneumatic chair"; two women ask each other if they are "too pneumatic" the way normal women ask if an outfit makes them look fat; a character even mentions how "pneumatic" Bernard's semi-girlfriend is - after having sex with her. It's always the characters saying it, however, so it's probably more an example of fictional slang than anything.
** It's actually a RealLife period thing. For a while during that time "pneumatic" was a common word (at least among Sci-Fi writers) when referring to women with large breasts and hips. Similar to words like "built", "stacked", "full-figured", "shapely", "voluptuous" and "zaftig". ''Literature/TheDemolishedMan'' even refers to plastic surgery as "pneumatic surgery" when referring to a woman who had her breasts enlarged.
* Creator/GeorgeOrwell seems to enjoy "comrade" and "invariably" (the latter of which shows up particularly often in ''Literature/NineteenEightyFour'').
* Charles [=DeLint=] uses the term "little say" at least once a book.
* In his excellent book about China, travel writer Colin Thubron went through a curious love affair with the word "shriven", which [[YouKeepUsingThatWord does not mean what he thinks it means]]. It means "absolved by confession", but he uses it as if it meant something like "wizened, exhausted, dried up." Maybe he was thinking of "shriveled". According to a book review by Scott Malcomson, use and misuse of obscure words is common throughout Thubron's writing: "I'm not at all certain, however, that mare's milk can be 'fomented' (though it is fermented)."
* An odd example -- Steven Brust's [[LiteraryAgentHypothesis fictional narrator]] Paarfi of some of the Literature/{{Dragaera}} books often uses the phrase "a propos" as a lead-in to paragraphs as part of his SesquipedalianLoquaciousness.
* Creator/PiersAnthony can't seem to get through a single book without describing something as "quiescent." He loved using the word ''balk'' in the earlier Xanth books.
* Ever notice that Creator/EdgarAllanPoe seems to like the word "arabesque"? Also "singular"
* Robert Newcomb's novels, and how! Everything that would normally be blue is "azure"; every single room, meal, and set of clothing is "sumptuous". These are far from the only examples, but Newcomb is particularly bad for only consulting the thesaurus once and then using that obscure word for the rest of his series.
* Creator/GarthNix's ''Literature/OldKingdom'' trilogy: "incipient" appears about ten times in three books and stands out.
** Nix also seems to like the word "inimical", which appears repeatedly in the aforementioned series as well as ''Literature/KeysToTheKingdom''.
* Creator/NealStephenson characters have a thing for referring to Japanese people as Nipponese. "Nippon" is a more accurate English translation of the country's name, but it's not nearly as popular a term as Stephenson's writing makes it appear. The word also gets discussed a few times. A character in ''Literature/SnowCrash'' corrects another character's incorrect usage of the slur "nip," which is taken from the word Nipponese. In another book, a character notes that the Colonel's use of the word "jap" instead of "nip" indicated that he did not serve in Asia.
* ''Literature/HarryPotter'':
** In ''Literature/HarryPotterAndTheHalfBloodPrince'', the word 'surreptitious' is used six times. Interestingly enough, however, it is far less present in the rest of the books.
** The word "rent" meaning "torn apart" is used several times, used figuratively.
** Creator/JKRowling is probably the last writer in the English language to use "[[HaveAGayOldTime ejaculated]]" as an innocuous [[SaidBookism synonym for "said"]]. She only did it a couple times, but it was memorable enough that the fandom has been [[MemeticMutation taking the mickey out of it ever since]].
** "Play a drinking game with the term 'darkly' and... die of alcohol poisoning," he said darkly.
* The ''Literature/{{Twilight}}'' series contains a lot of these, which is slightly understandable since Creator/StephenieMeyer is an English major and her narrator wants to seem sophisticated. Stephenie Meyer's favorite words are "Adonis," "incredulous" and "chuckle." Seriously, characters sometimes "chuckle" (insert adverb here) several times on a single page.
** Apparently "chagrin" as well, if you believe [[http://www.fanfiction.net/s/4568670/1/Chagrin this fanfic]]
** Likewise, variations on "Sparkle" and "Dazzle" and their similes. Case in point: "He was both dazzling and dazzled".
** "Scintillating" as a much-needed synonym for "sparkling," as in "Edward's scintillating arms." It's actually correct, albeit archaic, usage. In modern English, it's more common to see the word used to mean "witty," as in "scintillating conversation," but the word's original definition is "to emit sparks."
* Mervyn Peake, author of ''Literature/{{Gormenghast}}'', tends to use the word 'qualm' to mean 'shiver or ripple, as of delight' and, oddly, 'prank' to mean 'blotch or spot, pick out, color, highlight'. Also, the Tower of Flints is a blasphemous finger of stone pointing at the sky.
* Creator/EnidBlyton and "lashings" in relation to food, the root of the famous BeamMeUpScotty "lashings of [[TrademarkFavoriteFood ginger beer]]". Also it's quite fun to imagine [[WebVideo/YuGiOhTheAbridgedSeries Bakura]] whipping people with a beverage.
* During the writing of ''[[Literature/TheDresdenFiles Summer Knight]]'', Jim Butcher seems to have fallen in love with the word "basso". Nearly everyone's voice is described as such. It also appears about five times over the course of ''[[Literature/CodexAlera First Lord's Fury]]''. Butcher is also fond of "chitinous" and "susurrus."
** The man's obsession with thews borders on unnerving.
** Less frequent, but more obscure, are "obstreperous" and "insouciance".
* This trope is PlayedForLaughs and practically referenced by name in ''Literature/TheSookieStackhouseMysteries''. The narrator actually ''does'' have a WOTD calendar and will often look for opportunities to use the words from it.
* Creator/TamoraPierce's characters do everything with "grim good humor." Everyone has "masses" of hair that "fights" to escape its accessories, unless it's "cropped" short. If they're in pain, expect their muscles to "scream." They'll never grab or hold anything, only "grip" it. And more than one character has a "thin blade of a nose" (this is contracted to "thin-bladed nose" on one occasion, which barely makes sense).
* In Jacqueline Carey's ''Literature/KushielsLegacy'', characters rarely seem to do anything "quickly," but they're constantly doing things "with alacrity."
* Creator/DanBrown seems to ''love'' the phrase "quantum leap". It's used quite liberally in ''TheLostSymbol''.
* Creator/DavidEddings had an obscurely peculiar fascination with the words "obscure," "peculiar," and "fascination." Also "prosaic", and don't even get me started on how many times a character will say something "blandly".
** Also seem to have abruptly discovered, and fallen in love with, the word "genuflect" during the writing of ''Polgara the Sorceress''.
* [[Literature/InheritanceCycle Christopher Paolini]] has this habit when he writes: characters, many of whom do not have any sort of formal education (or are even downright illiterate), strangely have college level vocabularies, even when their status or profession would have them calling something differently. In text, he'll often pull a [[TabletopGame/{{Scrabble}} 25 point word]] from nowhere because, while he could have used several smaller words, or different ones altogether, he just ''had'' to use that big one, even if it chunks up the sentence, ruins the flow, and really has no place being there among such other common words.
** Nobody ever camps out--they "bivouac." (It isn't even used correctly half the time, as "bivouac" refers to a strictly no-tents-no-nothing military operation and not just setting up bedrolls and a fire in the woods.)
** He also has a tendency to use words that seriously clash with the Tolkienesque fantasy setting, such as parachuting obviously ''modern'' words like "psychedelic" into the middle of a passable imitation-KJV spiel.
** Christopher Paolini basically does this ''in spades''. It's like every ''character'' has a Vocabulary Calendar…and no one in-universe seems to notice how bizarre it is. The [[OurElvesAreBetter most excusably eloquent creatures in the world]] even tell the farmboy that his mastery of the elusive and ancient magical language is "perfect" after only a few months' practice ''of being literate''. Not to mention the rough draft of his apparent anachronistic invention of quasi-autobiographical, modern free-verse poetry.
* Creator/IanFleming in the ''Literature/JamesBond'' novels seems to have a fondness for "elegant."
** He loves to describe things, especially Bond's facial features, as "cruel".
* Creator/RaymondEFeist really, really loves the words "alien" and "quietly". Especially noticeable in his earlier books where "Character Name Sat Quietly" is a noticeably common way of opening a chapter.
* Creator/HarryTurtledove's ''Literature/{{Timeline 191}}'' does this with a made-up word ("flabble", roughly synonymous with "whine") that was eventually invented and popularized in the alternate America of the series.
** The prequel ''How Few Remain'', set in the 19th century, does this with the (then-popular) term "absquatulate".
* Terry Brooks loves to use "dissemble" for lie in the Literature/{{Shannara}} series.
* ''Literature/TheEyeOfArgon''. Nobody ever talks, they ejaculate, eyes are always referred as orbs or something, and there's one mention of a person having a "lithe, opaque nose". Especially special is "posterior," as in "Descending the flight of arced granite slabs to their posterior," because it's obvious that Jim Theis looked up the wrong sense of the word "bottom" in a thesaurus.
* Scott Westerfelt uses "fawesome" in ''The Last Days'' pretty much constantly, like it's the only slang word in existence. The word "fexcellent" is used as well.
* As an Oxford-trained English professor and lifelong philologist, Creator/JRRTolkien had an exceptionally strong command of the English language, and his use of words like ''fulminate'', ''habergeon'', ''confusticate'' and ''puissant'' certainly help establish the grandness (and comedy) of his masterpieces, ''Literature/TheHobbit'' and ''Literature/TheLordOfTheRings''. This kind of language shows up just as much in the texts that became ''Literature/TheSilmarillion'', and in ''[[Literature/TheHistoryOfMiddleEarth The Lost Tales]]'' and ''Lays of Beleriand'' [[AntiquatedLinguistics it gets so archaic]] that the editor provided an anachronistic-and-obscure-English-words glossary for each volume.
* Creator/RobinHobb uses the word "fellow" a LOT in the ''[[Literature/TawnyMan Tawny Man Trilogy]]''. With different meanings.
* In the Franchise/StarWarsExpandedUniverse, we have Troy Denning's "efflux"
** Michael Kaminski, in ''The Secret History of Franchise/StarWars'', uses "inevitable" and "inevitably" way too much, and often incorrectly.
* The English translation of ''Literature/TheCountOfMonteCristo''. There are about ''seventeen'' uses of "singular" in ''one chapter''.
** "Singular" is also very common in Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's ''Literature/SherlockHolmes'' mysteries. It's usage borders on OnceAnEpisode.
* Antony Horowitz has a thing for "somehow" (And GunPorn, natch, but that's irrelevant).
* ''Franchise/ConanTheBarbarian'' stories get a lot of miles out of "lithe" and "supple." And you can always identify the titular barbarian: he's the one who's described as "bronzed" and "tigerish" (or "wolfish") with eyes like "balefire."
** Creator/RobertEHoward was rather fond of "dynamic" as a heroic adjective.
%%** Don't forget his "mighty thews".
* Creator/PhilipPullman really likes the word "presently."
** Also "passionate/passionately". No, not like that. Mostly.
** Another slightly [[HaveAGayOldTime outdated]] phrase he likes is 'breast' in the sense of general chest. For example, Lyra clutches Pantalaimon to her breast frequently.
* Creator/PhilipKDick used "presently" a lot.
* Creator/IsaacAsimov seems to really like the word "sardonic".
* TimothyZahn likes to refer to conversations as " 'words' Character said to ''the other''". He is also a fan of the PunctuationShaker for alien names.
* [[Literature/ArtemisFowl Orion Fowl]] seems to have a thing about bivouacs. (A RunningGag?)
* ''Literature/TheLegendOfDrizzt'': Of late, R.A. Salvatore has eschewed all other way to say "used hand gestures for magic spell" in favor of "waggled their fingers". {{Waggle}}d? That guy just ''lightning-ed a lich back to a briny undeath!''. Also, any attack with a blunt weapon "blasts" the opponent.
* Creator/EdgarRiceBurroughs says describes Literature/{{Tarzan}} as having a "smooth brown hide" a lot.
* Daniel Handler parodies this through ''Literature/ASeriesOfUnfortunateEvents'', using a big word then [[LiesToChildren providing a definition that probably isn't accurate, but which does give a decent sense of the meaning intended for the situation]], usually prefacing said definitions with the phrase "a word which here means...". It's funny if you know the word already, and educational if you don't. Everybody wins!
* Creator/CharlotteBronte really seemed to enjoy describing black things, particularly people's black hair or eyebrows, as "jetty."
* The Literature/CiaphasCain book ''Duty Calls'' may create an allergy to the word "scuttling" (as in "scuttling horrors", "scuttling movement", "scuttling noises" and everything else related to Tyranids) in its readers.
** Absolutely anything out of the ordinary (but especially things relating to HypercompetentSidekick Jurgen) can be described as "preternatural".
* Bernard Cornwell, in the {{Sharpe}} series and elsewhere, likes using the word "flensed" in the context of battle wounds. Those who suffer said wounds frequently 'mew' instead of the more common whimpering, groaning etc.
* Creator/GeorgeRRMartin has a thing for using the word “song” in book titles. His novel series is called ''Literature/ASongOfIceAndFire'', and his other works include ''A Song for Lya'', ''Songs of Stars and Shadows'', and ''Songs Dead Men Sing''. Not to mention two story collections he edited, ''Songs of The Dying Earth'' and ''Songs of Love and Death''.
** It comes up within ''Literature/ASongOfIceAndFire'' as well. Turnips and the use of "jape" (occasionally "jest") instead of "joke" stand out most in the latest novel. It's not always clear whether they are deliberate attempts to get a more old-fashioned feeling for his medieval-esque world, or this trope.
** "Half a hundred" is clearly his favorite number, "half a heartbeat" his favorite length of time, and "half a groat" his favorite amount of money. (It starts out with "in a heartbeat" simply being overused; then "in/for half a heartbeat" is introduced and takes over in a big way. By ''A Dance with Dragons'' time is being measured in integers-greater-than-one of heartbeats.) He also uses "raper" instead of "rapist" for some reason, and "craven" as a noun much more often than "coward." Vomiting is only ever "retching" (which is confusing, since that usually means to gag without actually puking).
** In ''A Dance with Dragons'' the world 'leal' for 'loyal' seemed to be on every other page.
** A ridiculous situation is always a "mummers' farce." Actors and non-musical performers are only called "mummers."
** Boiled leather. So common that a fansite is called "All Leather Must Be Boiled".
** He also likes to use the phrase "must needs" instead of just must or need.
** In ''Literature/AFeastForCrows'', characters with uncles refer to them as "nuncle" (a phrasing not found in earlier books in the series).
** It seems that GRRM bought himself a dictionary of uncommon words between ''Literature/AStormOfSwords'' and ''Literature/AFeastForCrows''. All of a sudden, King's Landing is building galleas and dromonds.
** In ''Literature/ADanceWithDragons'', suddenly no one is ''ever'' right anymore. Instead they're "not wrong."
** And, of course, his love of switching around the words of phrases to make them more obtuse and sound fanciful. No one is "twenty one" years old, they are one and twenty. There aren't 45 somethings, there are five and forty. You're not a grown man, you're a man grown. And so on.
** In Literature/ADanceWithDragons, the phrase "Ramsay in his wroth" is used frequently in the Reek/Theon chapters. Actually quite funny since "wroth" is being used to replace "wrath" and "wroth" means "angry" rather than "anger."
* Creator/ChristopherHitchens was noticeably fond of "lucid", "mordant", and especially "trenchant".
* Creator/BrandonSanderson throws around "maladroitly" in the [[Literature/MistbornTheOriginalTrilogy Mistborn Trilogy]] quite a bit with the main character.
* Nora Roberts' characters have a 'yen' for something at least once a novel - which is a pretty considerable amount. It can be for anything from peach ice cream to softcore romance novel sex.
* Jame Rollins likes to work in the 'limned' with increasing frequency.
* [[Literature/{{Unwind}} Neal Shusterman]] really likes to use the term 'boeuf' to describe strong people or military personnel.
* Evidently, Creator/DeanKoontz is a big fan of "evidently."
* In-universe example in ''Discworld/UnseenAcademicals''. Glenda knows a lot of strange words because they're the favorite words of romance novel writers. Though she isn't sure about "reticule" and "boudoir."
* [[Literature/MalazanBookOfTheFallen Steven Erikson]] seems to have his seasonal favourite words from book to book, though 'potsherds', 'detritus', 'must needs', 'efficacy', 'desiccated', 'burgeoning' and 'pate' (nobody has a scalp, only pates) span the entire length of his main series.
** 'Egregious' pops up quite a lot in ''Literature/TollTheHounds'', and other words of the season include 'equity', 'mien', 'sunder/asunder', 'lass', 'misshapen', 'febrile', 'billowing', 'gelid', 'crepuscular', 'singular', 'despond' and 'hoary'. And characters have the tendency to growl, drawl and scamper about instead of talking and walking.
* WilliamFBuckleyJr liked 'velleity' (wish without any desire to do something about it) and 'tocsin' (alarm bell), among others.
* In the ''Literature/Gameknight999Series'', [=Gameknight999=] is referred to as the User-that-is-not-a-user a ''lot''.
* ''Literature/SecondApocalypse: R. Scott Bakker likes using the word "marmoreal" a whole lot. It crops up maybe ten times a book, particularly because many scenes are set in marble palaces, catacombs or ruins.
* In ''Literature/TheDresdenFiles'' characters will rarely simply have walked over to something. Characters will have "padded" somewhere. Regardless of footwear or any other factor that would influence the sound their steps make. Bare feet on a wooden floor. "Padded." Cowboy boots on marble. Also "padded."
* Creator/LeoTolstoy uses "handsome" to describe many characters in "Literature/WarandPeace."

[[folder:Live-Action Television]]
* ''Series/TheKidsInTheHall'' did this in universe with a sketch where a guy on a construction site constantly used the word "ascertain" and proceeds to force various conjugations of it when the foreman calls him on it and requests that he stops. The sketch ends when the foreman thanks the man for the opportunity to "delineate" the problem. Delineate appeared on the screen and the man experienced a EurekaMoment through the fourth wall.
* In order to appear more intelligent than he really was, GOB spent an episode of ''Series/ArrestedDevelopment'' shoehorning the word "circumvent" into conversation after learning the word from Michael.
* Episodes of ''Series/MightyMorphinPowerRangers'' would have this, seemingly having episodes based on phrases like "deja vu" and "vice-versa."
* ''Series/TheBigBangTheory'', "The Desperation Emanation": Sheldon and Amy apparently engage in this activity:
-->'''Sheldon''': [Leonard]’s a cornucopia of social awkwardness.
-->'''Amy''': Cornucopia. What a mellifluous word.
-->'''Sheldon''': Let’s make that our word of the day.
-->'''Amy''': Agreed. And we’ll use mellifluous tomorrow.
* Done in-universe in an episode of ''Series/BoyMeetsWorld'' where Eric has an actual word-of-the-day calendar. Unfortunately, the episode deals with relationship issues and the word of the day is "estranged". For the whole week. (Paraphrased:)
-->"They can't get back together today! Today's 'estranged' day! They can get back tomorrow when the word is ''[tears sheet off calendar]'' 'estranged' - HEYYY!"
-->"OK, not today, or tomorrow, but the next day when the word is ''[tears another sheet]'' 'estranged' - HEYYYYYY!"
-->"That's the last time I buy something from www.howdysucker.com."

* Music/{{Blink 182}}: "I'm (so) Sorry"
* ''Oceanborn'' by Music/{{Nightwish}}, with "Stargazers" as the most obvious example. Granted, Tuomas Holopainen was barely 19 when he wrote that stuff.
* Given Music/BadReligion [[SignatureStyle runs on]] SesquipedalianLoquaciousness, just about every song of theirs. An example from the album ''Suffer'':
--> I heard them say that the meek shall reign on earth
--> '''Phantasmal myriads''' of sane '''bucolic''' birth
--> I see the rapture in a starving baby's eyes
--> '''Inchoate beatitude''', the lord of the flies
* Many a Music/RedHotChiliPeppers song, given their pechant for WordSaladLyrics. Special mention goes to "Californication", where Anthony Kiedis manages to find 14 words that rhyme with the title ("elation", "quotation", "constellation"...).
* Music/{{Soundgarden}} already has enough WordSaladLyrics, but at times Chris Cornell gets really obscure:
-->Kilos through key-holes, Widows through windows\\
Pilots through ''eyelets'', Everyone is silent\\
''Tankards and flagons and snifters'' and flutes\\
On my way home
* Music/BobbyBrown's "My Prerogative". The joke was that he'd just learned the word and was using it to impress people.
* "Two Story House" by Music/GeorgeJones and Tammy Wynette. The way Jones sings the word "splendor" in the chorus makes it sound like he wasn't too familiar with that word.

* Depending on the translation, [[TheBible St. Mark's]] favorite word is "immediately." The Greek is "εὐθύς" or "εὐθέως" (euthys/eutheos) which appear over forty times in a work roughly the length of a modern short story.

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* Creator/GaryGygax put a noticeable stamp on the first edition ''Advanced TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'' books. "Dweomer," "geas" and "weal" win for obscurity; "notwithstanding" for frequency. Also "former" and "latter." He also loved (i.e., used all the time) Latin abbreviations (e.g., e.g. and i.e.), even really academic ones, (e.g., Ibid. and Op. cit.) placed in ordinary text (Ibid.) The first edition Dungeon Master's Guide is full of these. Most memorable: referring a built-in ability to swim as "innate natatorial ability". The Prostitute Table in the City appendix has about a dozen different synonyms for prostitute (trollop, streetwalker, etc.)
** When reading the "Fiend Folio", a monster handbook dealing [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin with fiends]] you will stumble over the word emaciated many times. Maybe these fiends don't get enough to eat.
** The retroclone ‘‘Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers of Hyperborea'' (based directly on the edition above) also suffers heavily from this. It uses the same obscure abbreviations (q.v.), british spelling, the archaic Old English ligture æ even in places where it makes no sense, and the author apparently used search and replace to replace every instance of "between" with "betwixt". And it's especially jarring because the rest of the text is otherwise obvious modern American English.
* ''TabletopGame/{{FATAL}}'' has ample amounts of atypical [[AddedAlliterativeAppeal alliterations]] applied in appellations of accidental alchemical aftereffects and articles.
* The parody sets for ''TabletopGame/MagicTheGathering'' have cards that {{lampshade|Hanging}} a [[http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?multiverseid=9783 few words]] they use [[http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?multiverseid=74331 a bit much]].

* In ''Theatre/PokemonLive'', Giovanni seems to be rather fond of referring to [=MechaMew2=] as a "mechanical marvel". The term is even used in its [[http://bulbapedia.bulbagarden.net/wiki/File:MM2Card.png promotional trading card.]]

[[folder:Video Games]]
* The developers of ''VideoGame/{{Warcraft}}'' / ''VideoGame/WorldOfWarcraft'' really, REALLY like the word "azure".
** ''Mists of Pandaria's'' writers seem to be really interested in using "nutriment" as often as possible.
* ''VideoGame/WildArms3'' was localized by long-time ''Franchise/FinalFantasy'' translator Alexander O. Smith. How can you tell? He is pretty much the only game translator active today that uses the word "moreover" more than once per script.
* The HD cutscene compilation of ''VideoGame/KingdomHearts358DaysOver2'' refers to Saïx as an "adjutant", and renders Lexeaus's title, "The Silent Hero" as the "Taciturn Stalwart".
* ''VideoGame/{{Homeworld}}'''s devs seemed to have something for the term "outskirts". Also present, though less so, in the sequel.

[[folder:Visual Novels]]
* [[Franchise/{{Nasuverse}} Kinoko Nasu's]] works, whether it be on behalf of the translators or himself, will always feature "with murderous intent" as a description. And that's not mentioning the sex scenes and mollusks.
* ''VisualNovel/KiraKira'' and other OVERDRIVE games have characters that "smile bitterly". What exactly is a bitter smile? Who knows.

* [[http://ozyandmillie.org/1999/10/22/ozy-and-millie-243/ This episode]] of the webcomic ''WebComic/OzyAndMillie'' parodies this trope nicely.
* Every strip in the webcomic ''[[http://www.dawnsdictionarydrama.com/ Dawn's Dictionary Drama]]'' uses a random word either from the [[http://watchout4snakes.com/creativitytools/RandomWord/RandomWordPlus.aspx Watch Out 4 Snakes! random word server]], or from visitors to the author's table at comic conventions.
* In ''Webcomic/{{Unsounded}}'' the word "moiety" has shown up several more times than would be expected (zero, really) in the comic and in accompanying materials.

[[folder:Web Original]]
* The [[Series/MysteryScienceTheater3000 MSTing]] of ''Literature/TheEyeOfArgon'' lampshades it:
-->'''Mike:''' Never say "posterior" again.
* [[CatchPhrase ACTUAL QUOTE TIME]] ''"I try to use at least one obscure word or neologism for every ten or so "fuck"'s. Keeps me intellectually honest."'' - '''Bryan Lambert''', ''[[http://www.youaredumb.net/ You Are Dumb]]''
* {{Wikipedia}} falls victim to it occasionally, too. [[http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=2002_in_baseball&oldid=461531847#May See here,]] with the word "calcimine". This is common enough with some words that ''xkcd'' [[http://xkcd.com/739/ made fun of it.]]
* On the Rooster Teeth Drunk Tank podcast, staff member (and former journalist) Geoff Lazer Ramsey consistently uses the word "penultimate" as though it were an intensified synonym for "ultimate". This is not only incorrect, given the meaning of "penultimate" (second-to-ultimate), but quite insane given the meaning of "ultimate" (no further intensity is either necessary or possible).
** Geoff also seems to have not learned any adjectives other than "tremendous." Making a drinking game of it will destroy one's liver.
* A comment on [[http://www.cracked.com/article_18470_the-7-most-horrifying-things-ever-discovered-in-human-body.html this]] Website/{{Cracked}} article points out the site's liking for the word "baffling".
** There are a [[DrinkingGame/{{Cracked}} few other terms]] that show up in a lot of the headlines.
** One obsolete definition of the term "conceit" allows it to be used as a synonym for the term "concept." Cracked is in love with this usage and forces it into numerous articles.
* A video commentary of a ''VideoGame/MegaMan3'' run by The Megas ends up on this topic. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s5L8SxjY95Q#t=9m Can be found a few seconds after the nine minute mark.]]
** This is extra hilarious when it comes up again at the beginning of Part 6.
* Diane Castle of the Literature/WhateleyUniverse trots out some new vocab in every Phase novel. Since when does a fourteen year old use the word 'propaedeutic' or 'fictile'? Since said fourteen year old has an eidetic memory, the best schooling his billionaire parents could buy, a need to appear mature and intelligent among businessmen and politicians, and a personal preference for sounding smarter than those he's talking to. Note that Ms. Castle only uses words like that when writing from Phase's perspective, dropping back to a more normal vocabulary when writing as Aquerna or other more normal teenagers.
* Sam Hughes, of Website/ThingsOfInterest, seems very fond of the word "fractionally".

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''[[WesternAnimation/JusticeLeague JLU]]'' episode "Question Authority": [[CrazyAwesome The Question]] [[CreepyMonotone tells]] [[PresidentEvil Luthor]] "while my distaste for you as a human being is brobdingnagian,[[note]]From "Brobdingnag", the land of giants in ''Literature/GulliversTravels'', and meaning "outrageously huge".[[/note]] [[ShootTheDog what I am about to do]] [[NothingPersonal isn't personal]]."

[[folder:Other Writing]]
* Judges (or, more accurately, their clerks) are occasionally prone to this when writing opinions, since (in [[UsefulNotes/TheCommonLaw common-law countries at least]]) opinions are supposed to be educated discussions of the legal issue. One particularly painful example: "Although a preemption claim is asthenic when applied to cases where there is concurrent state and federal jurisdiction over the underlying federal cause of action, it becomes puissant when applied to bankruptcy." ''MSR Exploration Ltd. v. Meridian Oil, Inc.'', 74 F.3d 910, 913-14 (9th Cir. 1996). "Asthenic" means "weak," and "puissant" means "strong," and no, neither fancy word is commonly used by lawyers.