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Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day for October 30, 2006 is:
officious \uh-FISH-us\ adjective
1 : volunteering one's services where they are neither asked nor needed : meddlesome
2 : informal, unofficial
Jane wanted to help her neighbors, but she was hesitant to offer assistance for fear of being perceived as officious.
Did you know?
Don't mistake "officious" for a rare synonym of "official." Both words stem from the Latin noun "officium" (meaning "service" or "office"), but they have very different meanings. When the suffix "-osus" ("full of") was added to "officium," Latin "officiosus" came into being, meaning "eager to serve, help, or perform a duty." When this adjective was borrowed into English in the 16th century as "officious," it carried the same meaning. Early in the 17th century, however, "officious" began taking on a negative sense to describe a person who offers unwanted help. This pejorative sense has driven out the original "eager to help" sense to become the predominant meaning of the word in Modern English. "Officious" can also mean "of an informal or unauthorized nature," but that sense isn't especially common.
*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.