Association of British Scrabble Players

Pitfalls and Pratfalls


This is a collection of words with a tricky twist that might lure you into making a costly mistake. Of course, any true Scrabble player has a practically unbounded talent for confusing words, misremembering words, half-remembering words, remembering words from languages other than the one being played in or even inventing completely new words not known in any language, and a selection like this can barely scratch the surface of what is possible. Note also that I have excluded the large class of 'plurals or apparent plurals with no singular' (e.g. BEDSOCKS — for reasons obscure to me you can't have one BEDSOCK*) which I have already covered, see 'Plurals with no singular'.

I have included on the left-hand side a small number of especially plausible phoneys, though naturally these need to be handled with the equivalent of asbestos gloves. They are shown starred and in red.
Further contributions welcome!

12/01/2012 Now updated for CSW12, reflecting the fact that quite a few phoneys under CSW07 are no longer phoney


abluted washed clean. No verb ABLUTE*.
aby abye the past is ABOUGHT not ABYED*.
acquite to acquit: ACQUITES, ACQUITING, ACQUIT. No ACQUITED*.
addorsed turned back to back. No verb ADDORSE*.
affix past is only AFFIXED, not AFFIXT*, although both FIXED and FIXT are good.
afflated inspired. No AFFLATE*.
agalwood no AGAL*.
airmile* phoney. Try RAMILIE.
aleying the verb is ALEYE, not aley*
aread or AREDE or ARREEDE but not AREED*. And the past of AREDE is ARED or AREDD, not AREDED*.
artal this is a pl. of ROTL (can also be ROTLS), a unit of weight. No ARTALS*.
atlantic* phoney. Try TANTALIC. PACIFIC, of course, is OK.
aurar this is the pl. of EYRIR, an Icelandic unit of currency: no —S.
awful not AWEFUL*. But both AWSOME and AWESOME are OK.
axe gives AXING not AXEING*.
axlike no AXELIKE*.
banty this is a noun: there is no BANTIER* (try ATEBRIN) or BANTIEST* (try TABINETS).
basho a sumo wrestling tournament. No —S.
basifixed attached by the base. No verb BASIFIX*.
batwing an adjective, as in 'batwing sleeve'. No —S.
beanie not BEANY*.
bedotted covered with dots. No verb BEDOT*.
begored covered with gore. No verb BEGORE*.
beinked covered with ink. No verb BEINK*.
bemazed stupefied. No verb BEMAZE*.
bemedal past is BEMEDALED or BEMEDALLED but participle is only BEMEDALLING not BEMEDALING*.
benchtop an adjective meaning 'for use at a bench'. No —S.
bendily* phoney. Try BYLINED.
bepatched covered with patches. No verb BEPATCH*.
beplumed covered with plumes. No verb BEPLUME*.
beribboned covered with ribbons. No verb BERIBBON*.
berobed clad in a robe. No verb BEROBE*.
berouged covered with rouge. No verb BEROUGE*.
besped past of BESPEED. There is no verb BESP*.
betumbled in a tumbled state. No verb BETUMBLE*.
birdie not BIRDY*. And as a verb it gives BIRDIEING not BIRDYING*.
birkie not BIRKY*.
birlieman (Scots) an umpire, an arbiter. No BIRLIE*.
bonkers crazy. There is no BONKER* to mean someone who bonks!
brandise noun only: no BRANDISING* or BRANDISED*.
bready no BREADIER* or BREADIEST*.
briefer a noun, 'one who briefs', as well as the comparative of BRIEF, hence BRIEFERS.
briming phosphorescence of the sea. No verb BRIME*.
brosy no BROSIER* or BROSIEST*.
buirdly (Scots) an adjective meaning 'stalwart'. There is no BUIRD*.
bustier a noun, 'a strapless long-line brassiere', as well as the comparative of BUSTY, so BUSTIERS is OK.
cajun relating to descendants of the French-speaking Acadians deported to Louisiana in 1755. No —S.
calmer comparative of CALM: not 'one who calms', so no CALMERS* (try MARCELS).
camerated chambered, vaulted. No verb CAMERATE*.
cardfile* phoney. Try FILECARD or FRICADEL.
cartop able to fit on top of a car. No —S.
caseful* phoney. Try FECULAS.
catchen (Spenser) to catch. Infinitive only: no verb forms.
cerulean dark blue: this can take an —S but its variant CAERULEAN can't.
chainer* phoney. Try ARCHINE or FOREMAN.
chastize* phoney, CHASTISE is one of the few —ISE words now without a corresponding —IZE. Try ZAITECHS.
chylde designates a youth of gentle birth. No CHYLDES*, although the variant CHILDE does give CHILDES.
cissing there is no verb CISS*.
coadapted adapted one to another. No COADAPT*.
cocuswood no COCUS*.
comix this is a plural noun: slang for comics, not a verb so no COMIXES, COMIXED*, COMIXING*.
confuser* phoney. Try FROUNCES.
conman* phoney: two separate words.
cosier cozier these are nouns, 'a cobbler', as well as the comparatives of COSY and COZY, so COSIERS and COZIERS are OK.
cottier a noun, meaning a kind of tenant, not the comparative of an adjective COTTY*.
covyne not COVINE* (try NOVICE).
crosser a noun, 'one who crosses', as well as the comparative of CROSS, hence CROSSERS.
crozzled blackened or burnt at the edges. No verb CROZZLE*.
cupolated furnished with a CUPOLA. No verb CUPOLATE*.
cuz the plural is CUZZES, not CUZES*, just as the plural of COZ is COZZES (but COZES exists from the verb COZE).
dae (Scots) to do: DAES, DAEING, DONE, DID. No DAED*.
daftie a simpleton. No DAFTY*.
damndest no DAMNDER* (but there is DAMNEDER).
dapper can be a noun as well as adjective, hence DAPPERS.
darndest no DARNDER* (but there is DARNEDER).
deleter* phoney. Try DEERLET.
dicey beware the phoney DICY*. Yet both RICY and RICEY are good.
dodman a snail. Pl. is DODMANS not DODMEN*.
durndest no DURNDER* (but there is DURNEDER).
daresay this verb does not conjugate: no DARESAYS* etc.
dautie not DAUTY*.
dawtie not DAWTY*.
decanal an adjective meaning 'relating to a dean' and not a verb meaning 'to remove canals from', so no DECANALS*. Do not believe everything Barry Grossman tells you during a game. In fact, do not believe anything Barry Grossman tells you during a game...
decoherer a device for bringing a COHERER back to its former condition after it has been affected by an electric wave. No verb DECOHERE*.
delurks* phoney. Try SKUDLER.
disbodied disembodied. No verb DISBODY*.
disbound not having a binding. No verb DISBIND*.
disgodded deprived of divinity. No verb DISGOD*.
dismoded outmoded. No verb DISMODE*.
disorbed deprived of sovereignty. No verb DISORB*.
disrelated not related. No verb DISRELATE*.
dizain not DIZAINE*, despite SIXAIN or SIXAINE.
doomsaying the act of prophesying doom. There is DOOMSAYER, but no DOOMSAY*.
doily or DOYLY or DOYLEY but not DOILEY*.
dollier a noun, 'one who uses a dolly', not a comparative, so DOLLIERS is OK.
dormie this is an adjective, so no DORMIES*. Try MISDOER or MOIDERS.
draco an adjective, as in draco lizard. No —S.
drapier comparative of DRAPY, but also a noun, a draper, so takes —S.
duel DUELLING/DUELLINGS or DUELING but no DUELINGS*.
easter unlike NORTHER, SOUTHER and WESTER, which can be verbs, this can only be a noun.
eastland adjective only, unlike NORTHLAND and SOUTHLAND which can take —S. There is no WESTLAND*.
eftest as soon as possible. No EFTER*.
egotiser* phoney. Try ERGOTISE.
eirenic irenic variants, but IRENIC takes an -S and EIRENIC doesn't.
ejector no EJECTER*.
ekuele a former standard monetary unit of Equatorial Guinea. No —S in plural, but the variant EKPWELE does take an —S.
elhi (US) pertaining to school grades 1 to 12. Adjective only: no ELHIS*.
embace (Spenser) to lower, debase: EMBACES, EMBACING, EMBASTE (not EMBACED*).
emersed standing out from or rising above water. No verb EMERSE*.
emptier this is a noun, 'one who empties', as well as the comparative of EMPTY, so EMPTIERS is OK.
enfested (Spenser) embittered. No verb ENFEST*.
enfestered festered. No verb ENFESTER*.
enridged formed into ridges. No verb ENRIDGE*.
entrall (Spenser) entrail: pl. ENTRALLES not ENTRALLS*.
equaler* phoney. Try LEQUEAR.
erecter one who erects. The adjective ERECT does not compare, so no ERECTEST*.
eroders* phoney. Try REREDOS.
exacter a noun, 'one who exacts', as well as the comparative of EXACT, so EXACTERS is OK. There is also EXACTOR.
fallguy* phoney. Try FUGALLY.
fancier a noun, 'one who fancies', as well as the comparative of FANCY, so FANCIERS is OK.
faster yes, this can be 'one who fasts', so FASTERS is OK. But don't try SLOWERS*!
feralised run wild following domestication. No FERALISE*.
feralized run wild following domestication. No FERALIZE*.
ferrograms pl. of FERROGRAM*, a record made by FERROGRAPHY, a technique for measuring magnetically the wear on machinery. Note that FERROGRAM* itself is not valid because it was omitted from Chambers.
fico takes pl. FICOS or FICOES but the variant FIGO takes only FIGOS.
frijol a kidney bean: pl. FRIJOLES not FRIJOLS*.
footrail* phoney. Try FAROLITO.
forname* phoney. Try FORAMEN or FOREMAN.
forrad (Scots) forward: FORRADER or FORRARDER, but no FORRADEST*.
foulers* phoney. FOULER is only the comparative of foul, not one who fouls. Try FUROLES or OURSELF.
fracking the process of forcing liquid containing sand or other material into the strata round a well bottom to split them and prevent them closing. There is an unrelated Scots adjective FRACK, meaning 'prompt, eager', but no verb FRACK so no FRACKS* or FRACKED*.
franker this is a noun, 'one who franks', as well as the comparative of FRANK, so FRANKERS is OK.
fratching quarrelsome. There is a noun FRATCH, but no verb, so no FRATCHED*.
fricking an expletive intensifier. No verb FRICK*.
front there is a comparative FRONTER, in the restricted sense of 'articulated at the front of the oral passage', but no FRONTEST*.
fumado not FUMATO* (you're thinking of SFUMATO).
furlike* phoney. Try FLUKIER.
furrier this is a noun, 'one who sells furs', as well as the comparative of FURRY, so FURRIERS is OK.
gangling loosely-built. No verb GANGLE*.
ghillie not GHILLY*. As a verb it gives GHILLYING not GHILLIEING*.
gliffing the time required to give a glance, an instant. There is a noun GLIFF, but no GLIFFED*.
goaders* phoney. Try DOGEARS.
greek something unintelligible: no GREEKS*. But GREEKED and GREEKING are OK (printing terms).
grisled no GRISLE*.
gropings* phoney (what, no GROPINGS in the back of the car?). Try PROGGINS.
grovel gives GROVELED or GROVELLED, GROVELING or GROVELLING. But note that GROVELLINGS is OK but not GROVELINGS*.
guise there is no GUIZE*, despite AGUIZE and GUIZER.
hasbeen* phoney. Try BANSHEE, BEENAHS or SHEBEAN.
hatter one who makes hats, but also a verb: to vex, annoy: HATTERS, HATTERED, HATTERING.
hattrick* phoney: two words or hyphenated.
hellier this is a noun: a slater or tiler, not the comparative of an adjective HELLY*.
henchman no HENCH*.
hillmen people living in the hills, but there is no HILLMAN*.
hokku a series of HAIKU. No HOKKUS*, though HAIKU now does take -S.
hong (obs.) to hang: HONGS, HONGING but no HONGED*.
hotter can be a verb, to tremble: hence HOTTERS, HOTTERED, HOTTERING.
humbler a noun, 'one who humbles', as well as the comparative of HUMBLE, hence HUMBLERS.
incut set in as if by cutting. Adjective only: no INCUTS* or INCUTTING*.
inflexed turned inwards. No verb INFLEX*.
ingrown this and INGROWING are OK, but there is no INGROWS* or INGREW*.
inhouse* phoney. Try HEINOUS.
inkjet adjective denoting a kind of printer: no INKJETS*.
inlier a rock information. Not the comparative of INLY, so do not infer an INLIEST*.
inlying lying within. No verb INLIE*.
jailbait adjective denoting a girl who has not reached the legal age of consent. No JAILBAITS*: the noun is jail-bait.
jeon a monetary unit of South Korea. No JEONS*.
jetlag OK but no JETLAGGED*.
jokol no JOKOLS*.
jollier a noun, 'a joker', as well as the comparative of JOLLY, hence JOLLIERS.
jun a monetary unit of South Korea. No JUNS*.
juster a noun, 'one who sells justs (jousts)', as well as the comparative of JUST, so JUSTERS is OK.
kart there is KARTING but no KARTED*.
keener can be a noun, 'one who keens (laments)', as well as the comparative of KEEN, hence KEENERS.
keyring adjective only: No —S.
kiddier 'a huckster, a cadger', and not the comparative of an adjective KIDDY, though KIDDY is OK as a verb.
kuvasz a breed of sheepdog. The pl. is KUVASZOK.
kyne (Scots) cattle. Already plural: no KYNES*.
laborsaving of a household device, saving work. No LABOURSAVING*.
landwind there is no SEAWIND*.
lentigo a freckle or freckle-like condition: pl. LENTIGINES not LENTIGOS*.
lightwave relating to a wave of light. Adjective only: no LIGHTWAVES*.
likuta a monetary unit of Zaire. The pl. is MAKUTA not LIKUTAS*.
loathy no LOATHIER* (try AEROLITH) or LOATHIEST* (try HELIOSTAT).
longer a noun, 'one who longs', as well as the comparative of LONG, hence LONGERS.
losen (Spenser) to lose. Infinitive only: no verb forms.
loti a monetary unit of Lesotho: the pl. is MALOTI not LOTIS*.
lubfish a kind of dried fish. No LUB*.
luge gives LUGING or LUGEING, both of which take -S.
lusher this is a noun, 'an alcoholic', as well as the comparative of LUSH, so LUSHERS is OK.
madder a noun, a kind of dye, as well as the comparative of mad: hence MADDERS.
magyar of a garment, cut with the sleeves in a piece with the rest. No MAGYARS*.
malist not an adherent of MALISM, but an old Spenserian past of MALICE, to bear ill till. So no —S.
manful no WOMANFUL* (but there is WOMANFULLY).
maraging a process in metallurgy. No verb MARAGE*.
marver this is a noun or verb, not the comparative of an adjective MARVE* (you're thinking of MARVY). So no MARVEST*.
meager an American spelling of MEAGRE, but unlike MEAGRE it does not compare, so no MEAGERER* or MEAGEREST*.
mega- don't assume all KILO compounds have a corresponding MEGA compound e.g. KILOBIT/MEGABIT, KILOBYTE/MEGABYTE, KILOBAR/MEGABAR, KILOBAUD but not MEGABAUD*.
melamed a teacher in a Jewish school: the pl. is MELAMDIM not MELAMEDS*.
metaplot nothing to do with modern novels, but the pl. of METAPELET, a woman acting as a foster-mother to children on a kibbutz. No METAPLOTS*.
mid has superlative MIDDEST, situated most nearly in the middle, but no MIDDER*.
millier a noun (a unit of measure), not the comparative of an adjective MILLY*.
minished past tense of MINISH, not 'a small shed'. So no MINISHEDS*!
misavised (Spenser) ill-advised. No verb MISAVISE*.
misbegot begotten by mistake. No verb MISBEGET*.
misbegotten begotten by mistake. No verb MISBEGET*.
misgotten unjustly gotten. No verb MISGET*.
mistreading a false step. No verb MISTREAD*.
most gives MOSTEST but not MOSTER*.
motey not MOTY*.
muzaky do not infer from this the existence of MUZAK*, which remains capitalised.
niellated inlaid in NIELLO. No verb NIELLATE*.
nightside OK, as is DAYSIDE, but despite 'Star Wars' there is no DARKSIDE*.
nodated knotted. No verb NODATE*.
nodulated having or characterized by nodular growths, esp. root nodules. No verb NODULATE*.
noncling an adjective meaning 'that does not cling'. There is no verb NONCLE*!
nontarget adjective only: no NONTARGETS*.
only has a superlative ONLIEST but no comparative ONLIER*.
opalised made smooth, like OPAL. No OPALISE*.
opalized made smooth, like OPAL. No OPALIZE*.
outcurve a type of pitch in baseball. Not a verb, so no OUTCURVED* or OUTCURVING*.
outedge an outer limit. Noun only, so no OUTEDGED* or OUTEDGING*.
outfling a sharp retort or gibe. Noun only, so no OUTFLUNG* or OUTFLINGING*.
outjet a projection. Not a verb, so no OUTJETTED* or OUTJETTING*.
outjut a projection. Not a verb, so no OUTJUTTED* or OUTJUTTING*.
outroop a noun meaning a kind of auction, not a verb, so no OUTROOPED* or OUTROOPING*.
outrope a noun meaning a kind of auction, not a verb, so no OUTROPED* or OUTROPING*.
outsavor to surpass in savour. No OUTSAVOUR*.
outsaw this is the past of OUTSEE and not a verb in its own right meaning 'to exceed in sawing'. So no OUTSAWS*.
overflush noun or adjective, but not a verb, so no OVERFLUSHED* or OVERFLUSHING*.
overinked concealed by the use of ink. No verb OVERINK*.
ovist a believer in the doctrine that the ovum contains all future generations in germ. No OVISM*.
ower not 'someone who owes' but Scots for 'over', so no OWERS*.
paisano a fellow countryman: pl. PAISANOS not PAISANI* - despite the fact that the variant PAESANO can be either PAESANI or PAESANOS in the plural.
panto pl. is PANTOS not PANTOES* (try TEOPANS).
pearlised treated so as to give a pearl-like finish to. No PEARLISE*.
pearlized treated so as to give a pearl-like finish to. No PEARLIZE*.
pedal PEDALLING/PEDALLINGS but PEDALING and not PEDALINGS*.
pelon in Latin America: (of an animal, esp. a dog) having almost no hair. No PELONS*.
-penny THRUPENNY, FIVEPENNY, EIGHTPENNY and TENPENNY are adjectival only; all other PENNY compounds can be pluralised. (Don't ask me why THRUPPENNIES but not THRUPENNIES*).
percen (Spenser) to pierce. Infinitive only: no verb forms.
petlike* phoney. Try PIKELET.
pianola* a phoney (capitalised tradename). But one can have PIANOLIST.
pice an Indian coin, 1/4 anna. No PICES*.
piratize* phoney. Try TRAPEZII.
plumper a noun, 'one who plumps', as well as the comparative of PLUMP, so PLUMPERS is OK.
plumpie an adjective, plump, not a pie with plums in, so no PLUMPIES.
pompier 'uninspired, conventional', not the comparative of an adjective POMPY*.
potato pl. is POTATOES not POTATOS*.
preassembled assembled in advance. No verb PREASSEMBLE*.
precited cited in advance. No verb PRECITE*.
predial not a verb meaning to dial in advance, but an adjective or noun meaning connected with the land. So PREDIALS is OK, but no PREDIALLED* or PREDIALLING*.
prefilled filled in advance. No PREFILL*.
prefits* phoney. Try PRESIFT.
prehiring taking place before hiring. No verb PREHIRE*.
premade made in advance. No verb PREMAKE*.
preplant taking place before planting. Adjective only: no PREPLANTS*, PREPLANTING* or PREPLANTED*.
prereview taking place before a review. Adjective only: no PREREVIEWS*, PREREVIEWING* or PREREVIEWED*.
presplit taking place before a split. Adjective only: no PRESPLITS* or PRESPLITTING*.
prime does not compare: PRIMER is OK as a noun , but there is no PRIMEST*. Try IMPREST or PERMITS.
pulik this is a plural of PULI, a kind of dog (can also be PULIS): no PULIKS*.
pushings* phoney. Try GUNSHIPS.
putamen a fruit stone; pl. is PUTAMINA not PUTAMENS*.
quep an interjection: no QUEPS*.
quop to throb; not QUAP*.
radiale not RADIALES* — the plural is RADIALIA. Try SALARIED.
ranker a noun, 'a person who serves or has served as a private soldier', as well as the comparative of RANK, so RANKERS is OK.
rascally has superlative RASCALLIEST (from Shakespeare) but no comparative RASCALLIER*.
rather has superlative RATHEREST but no comparative RATHERER*.
reburned* phoney. Try BURDENER.
recenter not an American spelling of RECENTRE, but the comparative of RECENT, so don't try RECENTERS*.
recolor there is no RECOLOUR*. Americans may colour again; we get our colours right the first time...
redder can be a noun, 'one who redds (tides up)', as well as the comparative of RED, hence REDDERS.
redeny OK, but no REDENIAL*.
reinput* phoney. Try REPUNIT.
remediat this is an adjective, so no REMEDIATS*. But it does take an -E.
remines* phoney. Try ERMINES.
renoted* phoney. Try ERODENT.
renotes* phoney. Try ESTRONE.
rereward not a verb meaning 'to reward again', but a noun meaning the rearguard of an army, so REREWARDS is OK, but no REREWARDED* or REREWARDING*.
resave* phoney. Try AVERSE or REAVES.
resaved* phoney. Try ADVERSE or EVADERS.
resaving* phoney. Try VINEGARS.
rescans* phoney. Try ANCRESS or CASERNS.
restable not an adjective, 'that can be rested' but a verb 'to stable again'. So RESTABLES etc.
retiary an adjective meaning 'fighting with a net'. No RETIARIES*. Someone who fights with a net is a RETIARIUS (pl. RETIARII).
retoned* phoney. Try ERODENT.
retones* phoney. Try ESTRONE.
revulsed affected with revulsion. There is no verb REVULSE*.
rew though Chambers clearly implies that this is a verb, an old form of to rue, there is no REWING*. There is REWED, but only with the meaning 'to wed again'.
rieve to rob, plunder: past is REFT not RIEVED*.
righter this is a noun, 'one who rights', as well as the comparative of RIGHT, so RIGHTERS is OK.
riley not RILY*.
riotise noun only: no RIOTISING* or RIOTISED*.
riotize noun only: no RIOTIZING* or RIOTIZED*.
rippier a seller of fish, and not the comparative of an adjective RIPPY*.
roborating restoring health or vigour. No verb ROBORATE*.
rockier this is a noun, a kind of dove, as well as the comparative of ROCKY, so ROCKIERS is OK.
ronne (Spenser) to run. Infinitive only: no verb forms.
rosier this is a noun, a rose-bush, as well as the comparative of ROSY, so ROSIERS is OK.
rougher can be a noun, 'one who roughs': hence ROUGHERS.
royal ROYALLER, ROYALLEST — not ROYALER*, ROYALEST*. This is despite the fact that one can have LOYALER or LOYALLER, LOYALEST or LOYALLEST. Don't you just love the English language?
rype a ptarmigan: the pl. is RYPER, not RYPES*.
saltier this is a noun, a kind of cross, as well as the comparative of SALTY, so SALTIERS is OK.
salwar adjective, as in salwar kameez, a Pakistani woman's tunic. No SALWARS*. But SHALWAR does give SHALWARS.
saucier the comparative of SAUCY, but it now also means 'a chef who specialises in sauces' so can take an —S.
sceat sceatt an Anglo-Saxon coin: the pl. is SCEATTAS, not SCEATS* or SCEATTS*.
score be careful with the multiples: there is THREESCORE, FOURSCORE, SIXSCORE, EIGHTSCORE and NINESCORE but no TWOSCORE*, FIVESCORE* or SEVENSCORE*.
scroddled made of clay scraps of different colours. No SCRODDLE*.
sealion* phoney. Try ANISOLE.
seecatch a fur seal: the pl. is SEECATCHIE not SEECATCHES*.
semidarkness a state between dark and light. No SEMIDARK*.
semitic* phoney. Try MISCITE.
sheatfish there is no SHEAT*.
sheetfed no SHEETFEED*.
shier this is a noun, 'a horse that shies', as well as the comparative of SHY, so SHIERS is OK.
siliconised of glassware, coated with silicon. No SILICONISE*.
siliconized of glassware, coated with silicon. No SILICONIZE*.
snowsurfing no SNOWSURF*.
sokaiya in Japan, a corporate racketeer. No SOKAIYAS*.
sooner this is a noun, one who settles on government land before it is officially opened for settlement, as well as the comparative of SOON, so SOONERS is OK.
sparsedly sparsely. No SPARSED*.
spirated voiceless. No SPIRATE*.
spoffy no SPOFFIER* or SPOFFIEST*.
spoonfed no SPOONFEED*.
spurry this can be a noun, meaning a kind of plant, or an adjective meaning spur-like. The adjective does not compare, so no SPURRIEST*, but just to confuse you there is a noun SPURRIER, meaning one who make spurs.
staghorn adjective, as in staghorn fern, a type of fern with fronds that resemble antlers. No STAGHORNS*.
stepdancing doing a step dance. No STEPDANCE*.
stimie gives STIMYING not STIMIEING* (though STYMIE gives STYMIEING).
storiated decorated with elaborate ornamental designs. No STORIATE*.
subcenter no SUBCENTRE*.
sugging selling under the guise of market research. No verb SUGG*.
suspence (Milton) suspended, held back. Adjective only: no SUSPENCES*.
swinging as an adjective, has superlative SWINGINGEST but no comparative SWINGINGER*.
swiss a cotton fabric. There is a noun SWISSING, meaning a kind of treatment of cloth, but no SWISSED*.
tablier this is a noun, not the comparative of an adjective TABLY*.
tadvance (Spenser) to advance. Infinitive only: no verb forms.
taffetized having a crisp finish. No verb TAFFETIZE*, and no TAFFETISE*.
tanalised of timber, treated with Tanalith, a proprietary preservative. No TANALISE*.
tanalized of timber, treated with Tanalith, a proprietary preservative. No TANALIZE*.
tangentally in the direction of a tangent, tangentially. N.B. there is no adjective TANGENTAL*, only TANGENTIAL, but Chambers specifically gives both TANGENTALLY and TANGENTIALLY as the adverb.
tarrier a noun, 'one who tarries', as well as the comparative of TARRY, hence TARRIERS.
tasswage (Spenser) to assuage. Infinitive only: no verb forms.
teaset* phoney. Try ESTATE or TESTAE.
teasets* phoney. Try ESTATES.
tegulated composed of plates overlapping like tiles. No TEGULATE*.
temene this is the pl. of TEMENOS, a sacred precinct. No —S.
theatergoer no THEATREGOER*.
titmose Spenserian for TITMOUSE: the plural is TITMICE not TITMOSES*.
tomato pl. is TOMATOES not TOMATOS*.
tomfool there is TOMFOOLISHNESS but no TOMFOOLISH*.
tossen (Spenser) to toss. Infinitive only: no verb forms.
townfolk no TOWNFOLKS*. But the alternative TOWNSFOLK does give TOWNSFOLKS.
treeline* phoney.
udderful having a full udder. Adjective only: no UDDERFULS*.
ugli* phoney: the fruit still has a capital.
umbrated no UMBRATE*.
uncling not a verb meaning 'not to cling', but the participle of a verb UNCLE, to address as uncle.
uncoating this is OK and so is UNCOATED but there is no verb UNCOAT*.
undate an adjective meaning wavy, not a verb, so no UNDATES*. But UNDATED is OK, meaning not dated.
underlit lit from below. No UNDERLIGHT*.
ungravely (Shakesp.) not gravelly. There is no UNGRAVE*.
uninstall no UNINSTAL*, although there is INSTAL or INSTALL.
unkid a Scots adjective meaning 'strange', not a verb meaning to deprive of kids!
unpeeled not peeled. No verb UNPEEL*.
unrip pt. is UNRIPPED only, though the past tense of RIP can be RIPPED or RIPT.
untaped* phoney. Try UNADEPT.
untapes* phoney. Try PEANUTS or PESAUNT.
unticked* phoney. Try TUNICKED.
untrain* phoney. Try URINANT.
unwive to deprive of a wife — not UNWIFE*. But UNWIFELY is OK.
upflashing flashing up. No verb UPFLASH*.
upstretched no verb UPSTRETCH*.
uptitling the practise of conferring grandiose titles on employees doing relatively menial jobs. No verb UPTITLE*.
vagrom vagrant. Adjective only: no VAGROMS*.
vizier at least one person is reported to have thought that this noun (a Muslim minister) was the comparative of an adjective VIZY, and assumed the existence of a VIZIEST*. VIZY is OK, but is a noun or verb.
void this does not compare: there is a noun VOIDER (one who voids) but no VOIDEST* (try DOVIEST).
vraicking the act of gathering VRAIC, a kind of seaweed, as performed by a VRAICKER. But don't try VRAICKED*.
wanty this is a noun: no WANTIER* or WANTIEST*.
wasserman a man-shaped sea-monster. No WASSER*, and the plural is WASSERMEN not WASSERMANS*.
-wear there are many compounds with -WEAR. Most take an —S: CRUISEWEAR, FOOTWEAR, INNERWEAR, KNITWEAR, LADIESWEAR, LEGWEAR, LOUNGEWEAR, MENSWEAR, NECKWAR, NIGHTWEAR, OUTERWEAR, RAINWEAR, RUBBERWEAR, SPORTSWEAR, STREETWEAR, SWIMWEAR, UNDERWEAR, WOMENSWEAR, WORKWEAR. The ones that don't take —S are BEACHWEAR, EYEWEAR, PLAYWEAR, SHAPEWEAR, SKIWEAR, SLEEPWEAR and TOWNWEAR.
webfed no WEBFEED*.
wheenge gives WHEENGING not WHEENGEING* (although PEENGE gives PEENGING or PEENGEING).
winebar* phoney. Try WEBINAR.
writhled shrivelled. No WRITHLE*.
wrizled wrinkled. No WRIZLE*.
yesty no YESTIER* or YESTIEST*.
ygo ygoe these are past tenses — no YGOS* or YGOES*.
yo do not try YOYO*.
yokul no YOKULS*.
yom a day: the pl. is YOMIM not YOMS*.
yoyo* Phoney. The word is hyphenated.
zapata denoting a kind of flowing, drooping moustache. Adjective only: no ZAPATAS*.
ziptop adjective 'having the top opening fastened with a zipper'. No ZIPTOPS*.
zite a type of pasta like large macaroni. No ZITES*.
zonate adj. only, with variant ZONATED, but no ZONATES*.



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