I encountered two unusual derivations in prominent places last week, and want to note them briefly.
First, Laura Slattery’s Irish Times report (5 April 2012) about investigative journalism by RTÉ, the state broadcaster, contains the following line:
New investigative television documentaries from the unit will be “sparsed throughout the year”, according to RTÉ director general Noel Curran.
The adjective sparse, meaning dispersed or (thinly) scattered, is common enough. It comes from Latin sparsus, past participle of spargere “scatter”. But sparsed is much rarer. The OED dates the participial adjective to the late-16th century and calls it “rare or obsolete”, and the verb sparse to around the same time: M16–E17.
Nick McGivney on Twitter drew my attention to cahoot (v.), a creative shortening of the phrase be in cahoots, meaning be in partnership, often secretly. On the RTE Radio 1 show Drivetime (4 April 2012, at 1:42:50 approx.), Michael Fitzmaurice of the Irish Turf Cutters and Contractors Association said:
Out of the blue yesterday, both the EU and the Irish government cahooted together and decided, “Naw, we’re not goin’ to let ye cut yeer turf.”*
Cahooted here seems to have been used as a synonym for conspired or colluded, but perhaps with slightly different connotations in the speaker’s idiolect. Cahoot(s) (n.) first appeared as U.S. slang, possibly from French cahute (cabin, hut) or cohorte.
I found no evidence of the verb cahoot on COHA either, though again it appears informally online; Wiktionary has an example from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution: “our leaders were lying, tricking and cahooting with Halliburton”. But the usage is sparse.
* yeer means your (plural) and was formed from ye by analogy with your. Both ye and yeer are common in colloquial Hiberno-English.