7 Mysterious New Words about the Sea from Around the World

7 Mysterious New Words about the Sea from Around the World


As Jules Verne said, ‘The sea is everything.’

The sea covers seventy percent of the world’s surface and for all the Discovery Channel documentaries out there it remains largely undiscovered. A source of genuine mystery, the sea lures us closer to it while the danger of its depths pushes us away.

Read on for 7 mysterious new words about the sea from around the world.




An oceanid is a figure from Greek mythology. Made up of the three thousand daughters of Titan gods Oceanus and Tethys, Oceanids are patronesses of bodies of water.




The allision of two ships is different to a collision in that one of the ships must be stationary at the time. If this word isn’t currently used in automobile accident insurance claims then it should be. Like, there you were, minding your own business when suddenly another driver rams into you causing an inconvenient allision in the grocery store car park.

Ever heard the idiom, ‘in the offing’? No? Well, now you have. If something is ‘in the offing’, it means it is a thing that’s soon to come, something that can be seen to approach from the shore.
Although ‘abyssopelagic’ originates in the colorful and evocative Greek language its usage is primarily scientific these days and refers to a layer of the oceanic zone at depths between around 4,000 and 6,000m. The depth at which, I imagine, you find the things with no name.

The beautiful thing about this word is that it does not just mean moonlight. Gumusservi is not just any old moonlight shining down on any old surface. No, gumusservi is specifically the moonlight that reflects on the surface of water. Gorgeous.

Although the indigenous Australian language of Wagiman is near-extinct, the word murr-ma – which means to walk along in the water searching for something with your feet – was given new life recently when it was chosen by a student design team as the name of their innovative design for an amphibious prosthetic leg.




A lovely onomatopoeic word about the sea to end our list, sough is soothing to the ear, as both a word and a sound.


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