Main content

Free the Word: Dimpsy

28 September 2017

Dimpsy by Chrissy Williams

BBC Radio Devon

Dimpsy by Chrissy Williams

Dusk; twilight. Suggested by listeners to BBC Radio Devon.

The thin light fades / we hold our oars close / steady across the estuary / in the last stain of sunlight / past the still cormorants / when the sky gets dimpsy.

def | dusk; twilight.

The origin of dimpsy is not certain. One theory is that it may be derived from dim (which can be used as a noun to mean dusk), and dim certainly seems to be the origin of dimmit, another word from the south-west of England meaning dusk. Dimpsy as an adjective meaning dusky is in regular use in the south-west of England. It is frequently used to describe the distinctive light of dusk (or dawn) or the time when this light is present.

Read more on the OED Blog

Words and Films

The Festival