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What word that sounds somewhat like "carpenthy" which is used to describe an emotional crutch for example Linus's blanket in Charlie Brown? I feel like I learned a word like this eons ago and poof I can't find it anywhere. Perhaps I dreamed it.

  • Are you thinking of a cathartic? It's a bit strong, though. – Weather Vane May 13 at 14:44
  • Not quite, the word I am searching for is one that is very rarely used...it would be a word you'd see in a game of Balderdash. I remember reading this word and thinking what a wonderful and specific word. I wish I had a sharper recollection of when I saw it. – storypixel May 13 at 17:03
  • If it came from that game, it might not mean what the person claimed it meant. – Lawrence May 14 at 8:12
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It seems too obvious given the reference to Linus's blanket, but a common term for this is security blanket:

[Merriam-Webster]
1 : a blanket carried by a child as a protection against anxiety
2 : a usually familiar object whose presence dispels anxiety

// Alabama’s receiving corps is the best security blanket a new quarterback can ask for, but just how much does the Tide coaching staff trust Jones to throw the ball?
— C.j. Doon, baltimoresun.com, "Can Wisconsin bounce back? Will Auburn hang with LSU? Most intriguing college football questions for Week 9," 25 Oct. 2019

It's the second sense that has a broader application.


To address a comment, I find the words security and carpenthy to sound very similar. I might use them in a rhyme:

"My blanket offers not carpenthy, but instead provides security."

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  • Security Blanket doesn't sound like carpenthy to me?? – Conrado May 13 at 18:04
  • @Conrado Security and carpenthy sound very similar to me. I would use them in a rhyme. – Jason Bassford May 13 at 18:11
  • well, put that way... I guess you're right. – Conrado May 13 at 18:13
  • @Conrado I agree with you. Other than ending in the same vowel sound, they sound nothing alike. Different number of syllables, none of other syllables are rhymes, let alone exact matches – Kevin May 13 at 18:21
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    The Talmud tells a story of a woman who sent her cook to market for a colander but warns her not to buy anything with holes. If I were the cook, I'd ignore what the boss asked and bring back what the boss wants. There's a parallel here. – Yosef Baskin May 13 at 19:33
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oh my gosh I was way off... the word I was looking for was nepenthean. I cannot tell you how many obscure word lists I have been looking through. The mind is strange, thank you everyone for your help!

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    Wow, a wonderful word! I didn't know it, but now I think I won't forget it. Thanks! It's not in Peanuts though, is it? – Conrado May 15 at 4:17

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