Posted in English


I came across this word today and was strangely pleased by it. The root of it is the verb “afogar” whose main meanings are “to drown” or “to submerge”, but which has some related meanings which go along the lines of “to impede” or “to choke”, both of which make sense: you can imagine how being impeded or stifled might feel, figuratively, like being immersed in water, of how being choked or strangled would deprive you of breath just as surely as being drowned would.

So building on “afogar”, or rather its past participal “afogado” we’ve got the prefix “des” making it negative and the suffix “mente” making it an adverb, and we end up with “desafogadamente”, which you could literally render as “undrownedly”, but seems to be used to mean something like “freely” or “without hindrance”. Excellent stuff! Definitely using that at the next chance I get!

Affogato (image courtesy of Leva Kisunaite)

Afogar is quite an easy verb to remember if you’re a fan of delicious Italian treats because you’ve probably come across an affogato. If you don’t know it, it’s a dessert consisting of a scoop of vanilla ice cream with coffee poured over it. This combination of cold and creamy with hot and bitter is literally “affogato al café” or “drowned in coffee” and it’s the same word, just italianified.


Just a data nerd

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