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Crapola

220;
vulgar slang Worthless, unworthy, used exclusively as an expletive. Used in a lesser intensity than "crap." ('Crapola! I'm late!') Expletive meaning essentially the same as the expletive "crap!", but in a softer and diminutive manner. As in "crap", expresses a certain unworthiness or worthlessness in the situation or action of the context. In many circumstances and for many individuals, vulgar expletives are not acceptable. In such situations, many express frustration by modifying common vulgar expletives to a more agreeable form. The -OLA suffix was meant for such a purpose. The root of the word, from which it derived its meaning, is CRAP. The -OLA is an allomorph of the suffix -ole, which indicates small or little (from Latin diminutive suffixes -olus, -ola, -olum). The allomorphy is idiosyncratic, and the purpose of the change is not completely clear. It is observed, however, that expletives usually end in short / lax vowels, which add a brisk satisfaction to pronouncing them. The suffix -ole is pronounced with a tense 'o', and the short 'a' may have been added to make the morpheme more fitting for an expletive.
 
Crapola! I spilled my drink all over my skirt!
Etymology : concatenation of root CRAP and -OLA, allomorph of the diminutive suffix -ole
Source : overheard during dinner at Lovett College
Last modified: 10 June 2008


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