Brit' Word of the Day....

Today's BWOTD is another common term I have heard my whole life:

"Tom is a real boffin when it comes to the weather"

'BOFFIN' = Expert or enthusiast with nerdish tendencies!

I think here you actually use 'nerd' to describe someone like this?


Katrina Chambers said...

I haven't heard of this one before - that's funny!

Vickie said...

Yep, nerd, geek.....both acceptable terms. = )

David Isaak said...

Ah, but "boffins" actually have skills and are assumed to be smart. I'm a Yank, but I read The Economist, and they are constantly referring to "boffins" in at least a somewhat-favorable light--that is, overspecialized, and probably lacking in social skills and maturity, but still smart and and expert in certain domains. I don't think we have a word that quite means the same thing.

A "nerd" or a "geek" usually denotes someone immature and socially undesirable--but nerds and geeks may or may not be smart.

Expatmum said...

Actually have to agree with David Isaak - although Nerd and geek are probably the closet here, there's no word that includes the cringe-worthiness of a true boffin is there?
Boffins are almost too brainy for their own good somehow.

BritGal' Sarah said...

That's why I asked as I didn't think you had something exactly the same.

You are right a nerd is not as knowledgeable as a boffin, so it doesn't quite fit. Geek would probably be closer to Boffin. But in the UK Boffin whilst acknowledged as an expert is seen as a bit geeky too.