It’s happened to us all – we’re in a quiet room, whether it’s in the library, exams or just chilling, and that deep gurgling noise arises from the pit of your abdomen for no apparent reason, and then you sit there wondering how many people heard it. Whilst any normal person would call that “stomach rumbling”, of course there’s a scientific term to describe it, and that is as a borborygmus: rumbling and gurgling sounds in your intestines, caused by the by the movement of fluids and gases trapped within them. Gotta love the sound of your digestive system working. Or that you’re really hungry. So either you’ve eaten recently, or you should really eat something soon. The word itself hasn’t changed much – turns out it arrived in the 1720s from the Greek borborygmós, a term which is incredibly onomatopoeic when thinking about it… I think we have a clear winner for “strangest word and definition” contest, here.
Last modified: 9th May 2016