The leader of North Korea has introduced a lot of people to an interesting new word.
In response to Donald Trump’s UN General Assembly speech, in which the US president threatened to “totally destroy” the country, Kim Jong-un made a rare statement to call Trump a “mentally deranged dotard.”
The term got people scrambling for a dictionary to look up what the word could possibly mean.
Kim Jong Un calls Trump a mentally deranged U.S. dotard. Searches for 'dotard' are high as a kite. https://t.co/HztPoLSjXi— Merriam-Webster (@MerriamWebster) September 21, 2017
Merriam-Webster, which has quite the reputation for being the sassiest dictionary on Twitter, defined the noun ‘dotard’ as “a state or period of senile decay marked by decline of mental poise and alertness.”
So yeah, it’s not a compliment.
Dictionary.com provided some alternative, yet equalling cutting, definitions: “A person, especially an old person, exhibiting a decline in mental faculties” or “a weak-minded or foolish old person”.
Oxford Dictionary’s definition also reads: “An old person, especially one who has become weak or senile”.
The Korean original statement said "늙다리 미치광이," which means old beast lunatic -- which was translated into "dotard." https://t.co/2uQ0Xsxe2X— Jihye Lee 이지혜 (@TheJihyeLee) September 21, 2017
South Korean freelance journalist Jihyee Lee said the original statement in Korean used a term better translated as “old beast lunatic” but it became “dotard” in the English version released by North Korea.
When it comes to pronunciation of the word, fortunately it’s not quite as offensive as it sounds.
It's good to see "dotard" back in general usage (thanks Kim Jong!) (thanks Un!) but it's kind of uncomfortable because, you know "tard"...— Nathaniel Tapley (@Natt) September 21, 2017
Both Merriam-Webster and Dictionary.com’s recordings of the word give the pronunciation do-terd. We’re saying nothing.
Dictionary said it was pronounced do-terd as in— SugarMag (@sugarmagnolia37) September 22, 2017
But the recognised definitions didn’t quite cut it for some people on Twitter, as many came up with their own creative examples of how the word could more accurately describe Trump.
#dotard (noun)— Ed Krassenstein (@EdKrassen) September 22, 2017
A President who thinks his balls are bigger than they really are.
#dotard— Funny Or Die (@funnyordie) September 22, 2017
do·tard (dōdərd) noun
A word you didn't previously know existed, but googled today and said, "Damn, that's pretty accurate."
Many also commented on how impressed they were by Kim Jong-un’s extensive vocabulary.
Credit where it's due. The little maniac is right. And his thesaurus game is top-notch. #dotard— Dr Simia Rex (@VitruvianMonkey) September 21, 2017
Kim Jong-un has guaranteed himself that he is remembered as the only man who could accurately summarize Donald Trump in 1 word, #dotard— Ed Krassenstein (@EdKrassen) September 22, 2017
But were also annoyed that they’ve only just found out about the word themselves.
How the fuck did I spend this much time on earth without having #dotard in my insult arsenal? Now I'm actually old enough to BE one.— Denis Leary (@denisleary) September 22, 2017
Dear American Journalists,— Frederick Douglass (@HITEXECUTIVE) September 21, 2017
Shame on you for allowing Kim Jong Un to be the first person to call Donald a dotard.
Shame. On. You.#dotard.
As well as mildly terrified that they’ve found themselves at the stage where they agree with the leader of North Korea on something.
Haha everyone's looking up 'dotard' and saying "oh, yeah, that's bang on actually"— Graham Linehan (@Glinner) September 22, 2017
It is a sad, sad day when Kim Jong Un, who is completely mentally unstable, makes loads more sense than the American president.#dotard— SheetcakingThruThis (@SheetcakingThru) September 22, 2017
Trump mocked Kim as a “rocket man” on a suicide mission in his UN speech, which was his most direct reference to military action so far against the North, which conducted its sixth and largest nuclear test on Sept. 3, reports Reuters.