This is a case of knowing a word but then having the completely opposite understanding of it. Once I would have considered it complimentary to find that some one had been “fulsome” in their praise of something or some one. Not any more!
Not since I read the word of the day for Sunday, October 17, 2010, which was “fulsome”. No, it doesn’t mean 'full of praise’, like I thought; but rather the opposite and in fact is:
1. Offensive to the taste or sensibilities.
2. Insincere or excessively lavish; especially, offensive from excess of praise.
So once again, we see that although it is always good to read and broaden one’s vocabulary, it is also vitally important that one also fully understands what these words mean before one starts using them, otherwise one could be seen as just “fulsome”, rather than “full of praise” like they imagine.
So, what are some words that you have used in the past, only to find out they didn’t quite mean what you thought they did at that time?