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World of Words
A monthly blog of interesting words, phrases, and idioms.  Like us on Facebook to receive new posts.

Oh, the words you learn when you have friends in the medical profession. "You need a word of the month?" Beth said, "How about borborygmi?"

Well, how about it? I had no idea what that word meant, even though, it turns out, I do experience it from time to time. And once I looked the word up, I couldn't stop thinking of Winnie the Pooh.

"Hum dum de dum, hum dum de dum
I'm so rumbly in my tumbly
Time to munch an early luncheon.

Yes, that's right, a borborygmus is a "rumbly in my tumbly." It's the "rumbling or gurgling sound caused by the movement of gas in the intestines."

And, of course, borborygmi is what you have if there is more than one "rumbly" in your "tumbly." Unless you're a cow, in which case I suppose borborygmi is what you have if you have a "rumbly" in more than one of your "tumblies." Maybe.

What is the fascinating word origin story of the word? I wish I could tell you. All I could find is that it comes from the Greek word "borborygmós," which just means, "intestinal rumbling."

But I refuse to give up there. If I can't find an entertaining word origin story, I'll make one up for you. Here it is:

orygmos is Greek for "a pit or trench."

borbor is Greek for "muck."

So borborygmos just means "muck pit."

I can live with that. Which is a good thing, because like it or not, it's part of everyday life.

Now I'm going to go find some honey.

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