I came across these terms for aging recently and was taken aback – principally the pronunciation of them for a start was a challenge and the fact that they sound kinda ‘Dinosaurian’ 😊 Because I had a milestone birthday this year (even calling it a milestone exasperates me) I began to see a lot more articles on aging and women in midlife. Menopause as we know is a hot topic across media platforms currently and so it should be as we have been living in a dark, scary world when reading about this stage of a woman’s life. And then we add the term quinquagenarian into the mix, does that mean my life is over at just 50? I have now entered my quinquagenarian years and feel the best I have ever felt.
So, let’s look at the other terminology for the youngsters. A person between 10 and 19 years old is called a denarian, between 20 and 29 is called a vicenarian and a person between 30 and 39 is called a tricenarian.
If you are in your 40’s you are… quadragenarian. Not over the hill just yet, you have 10 years to be known as this. All these words originate from Latin and the -an at the end of the word means person.
I have covered people in their 50’s at the beginning so now let’s move on through the decades. When you reach 60, you will be known as a sexagenarian. Now that doesn’t sound as harsh and draconian as the two decades before.
A septuagenarian is when you reach your 70’s and an octogenarian is, yes you have guessed it, a person in their 80’s.
A nonagenarian is if you reach this age – the 90’s. Yes, we may have lived through the 90’s era but if we make it this far, we will be called a nonagenarian.
And finally, if you reach 100, you will be classed as a centenarian. Congratulations if you do or know someone who has, you can now tell them, they can call themselves – centenarians.
Now, try and say the phrases one after the other…😊
Denarian, vicenarian, tricenarian, quadragenarian, quinquagenarian, sexagenarian, octogenarian, nonagenarian, centenarian.