This chilly day I am spending curled toasty warm, catching up on paperwork and watching The History Channel. The show airing is a history of the evolution of food in 20th Century America. A professor and author of American cuisine actually said:
“After World War II, when America was booming, everybody had a real refrigerator with a freezer in it, which is a very, very brand new thing. So you’d have these fresh, frozen beans and all kinds of wonderful vegetables, unthaw them, just pop them in a pot of boiling water. And they had a fresher taste, and a brighter color, and Americans really loved that aspect.”
What???? I’ll put all other grammar and tense aside, considering this is a spoken response. But an expert in the field of all nibbles frozen used the word “unthaw”?! Oh, good gravy! Unthaw is not a word, in my book. It apparently is, in the Big Book.
The definition of unthaw is provided by 1913 Webster’s Dictionary:
Verb 1. unthaw - become or cause to become soft or liquid;"The sun melted the ice"; "the ice thawed"; "the ice creammelted";"The heat melted the wax"; "The giant iceberg dissolved over the years during the global warming phase"; "dethaw the meat". Synonyms: dethaw, thaw, unfreeze, melt, dissolve Related Words: de-ice, defrost, deice, deliquesce, dethaw, dissolve, flux, liquefy, liquify, melt, thaw, unfreeze.
To thaw means to let something melt until the ice is removed and/or the object/material is softened or mushy or liquid. By that definition, unthaw would be an opposite effect to a cause. Therefore, to unthaw is to freeze! Unthaw is an unlawful interpretation of the rules of grammar. Un-use it, folks! And thank you for reading this afternoon’s impromptu rant.