I come across the word louche about once a year, and though the meaning is often clear in context, I usually have to look it up to be sure (same with schadenfreude, which is the malicious enjoyment of the misfortunes of others). I like the sound of this word, coming close to “loose,” and “lush,” both, and in my head, I like to hear it pronounced by men. Even better, OED documents written use starting from 1819, which means my Regency characters might have an opportunity to call upon this word. Yum.
Etymology: < French louche squinting, Old French lousche, originally only feminine < Latin … (Show More)
Oblique, not straightforward. Also, dubious, shifty, disreputable.
1819 Lady Morgan Passages from Autobiogr. (1859) 318 There is some~thing louche about him, which does not accord with the abandon of careless, intimate intercourse.
1850 Thackeray Pendennis II. xxxi. 312 There’s something louche regarding him.
1873 G. H. Lewes Diary 16 Jan. in ‘G. Eliot’ Lett. (1956) V. 368 The whole thing appeared louche and unpromising.
1905 G. B. Shaw Lett. to Granville Barker (1956) 53 You could play Snobby. I want a slim, louche, servant-girl-bigamist, half-handsome sort of rascal.