Words: scrumptious, adj.

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IN THE index of The Oxford Dictionary of Quotations, there is nothing between scrotumtightening (a James Joyce reference) and scruples (as used by Shakespeare). Scrumptious is not the sort of word one utters if one wants to earn a place in respectable dictionaries of quotations.

The OED says, rather surprisingly, that scrumptious is probably identical with the dialect word scrumptious, meaning "mean, stingy, close-fisted" which is itself related to scrimption, a small quantity, from the verb to scrimp. The meticulous perfectionism of scrimping spread to a wider term of praise, especially of food.

Joyce, in Ulysses, mentioned "scrumptious currant scones and raspberry wafers" - more pleasing, even if less quotable, than his scrotumtightening sea.