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Sonder – Word of the Day

Posted: January 5, 2021 at 6:12 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Sonder – Word of the Day


The profound realisation that every random passer-by has a life as vivid and complex as your own. 


This word was coined by John Koenig in 2012 in his book, The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows. The goal of this project was to describe emotions that didn’t have words assigned to them.

Sonder is inspired by the German prefix sonder-, meaning “special”, and the French word sonder, meaning “to probe”.


  1. Hey man, I just had a sonder. I realised that the girl sitting next to me on the plane could have a mind-blowing life as a travel vlogger, or she could be a tomb raider like Lara Croft!
  2. It’s impossible to not be struck by a sonder as you look around at a railway platform.
  3. The sonder sunk in as I gazed upon the sea of humanity at Times Square.
  4. As I walked aimlessly around the shopping mall, I felt a great sense of sonder. So many people, and there was a possibility that each one of them could have a story that was way more interesting than I could imagine.
  5. If you want to truly know what sonder is, you must go to an airport.
  6. Looking at the faces of all the people I might never see again after this party, I couldn’t help but feel a great sense of sonder
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