23 February 2009

I hate the word "gifted'.



Gift. It's a noun, people.
You give a gift. You don't gift someone.
You received a gift. You weren't gifted anything.

Gifted can be an adjective, in fact, it can be an over-used adjective when it comes to describing children.

It sounds so freaking coy.

What? You gifted her herpes? Isn't that kind of you.


  1. What about "I could care less"? It's couldn't care less!!!

    Or gotten as the past tense of got? (that one could just be me).

    Or perhaps "I'll write her" when they actually mean write TO her.

    All very much Americanisms.

    What about flaunt/flout?

    I could be here all day... :)

    But certainly no good comes from the word gifted.

  2. The thing I love about the word gift is that in Danish is means married or poison - seriously - same spelling, same pronunciation. Brilliant.

    Unfortunately "gifted" as an adjective for children is entrenched. Though there is a technical difference between Gifted & Talented for those in the know (or who read this website: http://www.nswagtc.org.au/). I suppose gifted is a better adjective than some others that could be used, but....

  3. I don't mind the term used for children, it's more that it would seem approximately 99% of all known children are gifted according to their parents... either that or it becomes a dirty word...

    I love the Danish take - what a cack!

  4. 'Gotten' is just an older form of the past perfect of 'got' that has been preserved in American English and taken over by a different dialect of British English. That's true of a number of Americanisms, and also of Australian English - we preserve a lot of dialect words which are no longer prevalent in British English.

    The use of gifted in the phrase gifted child (or gifted musician etc.) isn't really an adjective - it's a past participle used adjectivally. What that really means is that there is a notion that someone's doing the giving - understood to be God in original usage.

    And the whole thing of turning nouns into verbs and vice versa has been a feature of English for at least 800 years - Shakespeare does it rather a lot.