"There is a single Old English word meaning ‘lying awake before dawn and worrying’. Uhtceare is not a well-known word even by Old English standards, which were pretty damn low. In fact, there is only one recorded instance of it actually being used. But uhtceare is there in the dictionaries nonetheless, still awake and waiting for dawn. Uht (pronounced oot ) is the restless hour before the dawn, when Aurora herself is loitering somewhere below the eastern horizon, rosying up her fingers and getting ready for the day."

Mark Forsyth in The Horologicon: A Day's Jaunt Through the Lost Words of the English Language

"'uhtceare' - The period just before dawn, a time when the Anglo-Saxon imagination felt grief was particularly potent. Klinck finds 'an element of sexual deprivation'.
shannonymous shannonymous
18-21, F
Jun 3, 2013