‘Presticogitation’: Professor’s bid to get word in OED

Nathan Bierma in the Chicago Tribune:

In the mid-1980s, Vanden Bosch — my English professor and now my colleague at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Mich. — coined the word “presticogitation.” It’s a spin-off of the word “prestidigitation,” which means “sleight of hand” and is used to describe magicians (derived from the French “preste,” meaning “nimble, quick,” and the Latin “digitus” for “finger.”)

“Presticogitation” is the cerebral equivalent — “rapid mental processing that commands compliance because of its speed and beauty,” as Vanden Bosch defines it.

“Since the mid-1980s, I’ve been asking students to try to find room for it in their writing,” he says. But Vanden Bosch says his campaign is more than a personal indulgence; it has a teaching purpose.

More here.