Wondrous Words Wednesday – Gumption

Posted May 12, 2021 by elzaread in Wondrous Words Wednesday / 18 Comments

It’s Wednesday and time for our favorite weekly meme, Wondrous Words Wednesday. This meme was first created by Kathy over at Bermuda Onion Blog and is now proudly hosted by yours truly.

Wondrous Words Wednesday is a weekly meme where you can share new words that you’ve encountered, or spotlight words you love.  Feel free to get creative! 

No rules apply here, just share any or all the lovely or new words you’ve encountered over the last fortnight. 


Tips and ideas:

  • Don’t go pull the Dictionary down from the shelf. Use words you came across in a book, a TV show, Google, a pamphlet, social media, doctor’s room, classroom – the possibilities are endless
  • If you want to share a story around your chosen word, you are welcome
  • If you want to link your chosen word up with a book or books, please do so 
  • You are welcome to share photos or pictures that will describe your word just a bit better (who doesn’t love Pictionary)
  • Let’s stick to words that are recognized in the English Dictionary. You are welcome to use translations of your chosen word or a brief history if it derives from a different language, but your readers need to be able to find it in the English Dictionary
  • Please add your link to Mr Linky and pay a visit to the other word wizards

You are welcome to use our graphic or design your own!

Today’s word is a brand new word to us, but I guess some of your might know it:

Oooee I like this word! It’s a real kitty cat word. Doesn’t this sound just like a cat to you?

“If you have gumptionyou have guts. People with gumption are determined and full of courage — and common sense, too. If you easily give up, and don’t have a lot of confidence or smarts, then you are lacking in gumption. It takes gumption to get things done — especially difficult things.”
Cats know how to save the day. I’m especially an expert at that. Just ask my Mommy. But I have to be honest, I got my inspiration from a few other gumptious felines:
The one, the only, Kitty Softpaws. Wow, she is such an inspiration to me. She has courage, confidence and sass. I know I a still a bit too much like Dulcinea, but one day I’ll be a real Kitty Softpaws. Oh yes, and let’s don’t forget about Puss in Boots. Handsome guy that one.
Dick Whittington’s Cat. My Mommy loves the story of Dick Whittington and his gumptious cat. You do know that Dick wouldn’t have been a name you would know at all if it wasn’t for his cat. I think it’s the same in our house. You wouldn’t even know who my Mommy is, if not for me.
Bagheera. Stinkie, my big, huge, humongous black bother – looks just like Bagheera. He is just as wise and brave too and I always feel safe when he is near. I know he’ll always make a gumptious plan if I need him to.
The Chesire Cat. Maybe mischievous would be a better description, but gumption can work here too. He did get Alice to the Mad Hatters tea party after all. That had to take some gumption.
Who is your favorite gumptious character?
If you want to join in the Wondrous Words Wednesday fun, add your name to the linky below and visit your fellow Wondrous Bloggers.
Lots of Love,



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18 responses to “Wondrous Words Wednesday – Gumption

  1. All of those cas, they really do have their "gumption" power. What a fun post! I remember you talking about Dick W's cat some time back, I had noted down that I needed to read it again… and I really do! 🙂

    • Hi Lex! When I saw this word, I immediately thought of Elza and just had to use her and all her feline companions for this one!

      Yes, you have to read Dick Whittington! Most of stories are really short and sweet, sure you will get a copy at your local library in the kiddies section.

  2. I wonder if the word "gumption" used to be more popular. I know it but haven't heard it lately. But I also haven't reread Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance recently — I think of it as a pure reflection of 1960s thought, though it wasn't published until a few years later.

    best… mae at maefood.blogspot.com

    • Hi there Mae! If I look at the comments, it does appear as if it was more popular a couple of years ago. I have never heard it before, but English is only my second language and I'm not very familiar with the older English words!

      Thanks for stopping by!

  3. Gumption! Fabulous word and I do love a character with a bit of gumption. I'm participating next week and am already looking forward to picking my word. I have a few ideas – I just need to narrow down the options!

    • Hi there Katherine! I loved the word when I saw it and just had to use it for Elza and a few other felines. I think it's quite fitting.

      Would be great if you could join us! Just remember that WWW is biweekly and we won't have a post next week. So you will have an extra week to think a bit.

  4. This is such a fun feature! I have heard of gumption, but I love finding and looking up random new words I see in books!

    • Hi there Tracy! We always have fun doing this meme. Since I started joining and then hosting this meme, I am also way more aware of weird and wonderful words in books.

      Hope you can join us somewhere!

  5. Gumption is a Texas word that my family has always used. We here have great respect for people who dive into troubles with resolve.

    Literary ties to the word? Robert Pirsig in his book Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance spends a good bit of time talking about gumption. Because this is one of my favorite books of all time, I will share a chunk of Pirsig’s talk about gumption here:

    “I like the word “gumption” because it’s so homely and so forlorn and so out of style it looks as if it needs a friend and isn’t likely to reject anyone who comes along. It’s an old Scottish word, once used a lot by pioneers, but which, like “kin,” seems to have all but dropped out of use. I like it also because it describes exactly what happens to someone who connects with Quality. He gets filled with gumption. The Greeks called it enthousiasmos, the root of “enthusiasm,” which means literally “filled with theos,” or God, or Quality. See how that fits? A person filled with gumption doesn’t sit around dissipating and stewing about things. He’s at the front of the train of his own awareness, watching to see what’s up the track and meeting it when it comes. That’s gumption.”

    Don’t you love that?

    • Hi Debbie!

      Please don't unfriend me, but I have never read Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. I guess I need to! I love that passage that you shared. Sounds like the perfect description of gumption.

      I thought it might be a word that is more well known in other parts of the world and to people who are English First Language. For us second language users, it's a lesser known word.

      Thanks for stopping by and for taking part in WWW!!

    • Haha, no, I will not unfriend you…and please don’t read ZAMM…I love it so much, and after I first read it, I begged everyone I knew to read it, and nobody read past the first few chapters, so it’s hopeless. I have given up.

    • It is here somewhere on my TBR list and I guess I need to read it just to sooth my conscience. Maybe I'll be one of your friends who manage to finish it!

    • Hi there Carole! Thank you! I love WWW and it just makes the week more bearable.

      Hmmm…. let me know if you find gumptious characters in detective stories. That can be good!

  6. Gumption is another of those words which used to be heard constantly here in the UK, but which seems to have been upstaged by more 'modern' phraseology now.

    I have to admit that old habits die hard when you get to my age though, so it is a word you will still hear me use on a fairly regular basis, as for me, it is a strong word which 'does exactly what it says on the tin'!

    I guess the first fictional character that comes to mind as a good example of someone with gumption, is the the one and only "Forrest Gump" himself! The author Winston Groom, who originally created the character for the book of the same name, certainly had a moment of inspiration when coming up with his protagonists name!

    Thanks for hosting and sharing and I hope that all is well with you 🙂

    • Hi Yvonne!

      I thought it might have been a well known word in other parts of the world, or to people who are first language English. I love this meme, because it shows me how little I actually know of the English language! English is my second language as you know.

      Yes, people of our age and using lesser used modern day words….. It's the same in Afrikaans! I use words that some of the kids at school never even heard of. So I guess it happens in all languages. It makes me think of Orwell's 1984 and word crimes/word elimination. Scary how true it is these days.

      I never even thought of Forest Gump's name and gumption! But it sure makes perfect sense. Thanks for bringing that under my attention!

      The passed two weeks feel as if it were very long and if I haven't spoken to you in ages. So I hope you are doing well and had a good two weeks!