Words of the Day. Rachmanism and Boycott

From the Word of the Day listserv.



noun: The exploitation and intimidation of tenants by landlords.

After Peter Rachman (1919-1962), a landlord in London who became notorious for unethical practices including driving out tenants to maximize revenue from his rental properties. Another fellow who got his name in the dictionary for harassing tenants is Charles Boycott (1832-1897), a British land agent in Ireland, whose mistreatment of tenants resulted in his getting ostracized, i.e. he was boycotted.

Hmmm, I wonder, will “Madoff” follow a similar path, with “madoffed” coming to mean someone has been swindled out of money in a massive Ponzi scheme or “He’s a madoff” used to refer to a bottom dweller with non-existent ethics who steal from everyone he comes in contact with?

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