somnambular

By: | Post date: 2017-04-17 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: English, Linguistics

Michael Masiello’s answer to If a healthy person suddenly starts preparing for their funeral, does that mean they’re subconsciously aware of impending death?

I suppose if someone were to make these arrangements while on Ambien, in a remarkably focused somnambular state, one might say the person was unconsciously aware of impending death. But “subconsciously” just doesn’t seem intelligible here.

Definition of SOMNAMBULAR

of, relating to, or characterized by somnambulism

Hien?

Definition of SOMNAMBULISM

  1. an abnormal condition of sleep in which motor acts (as walking) are performed
  2. actions characteristic of somnambulism

Oh, so you mean…

somnambular (Collins)

(Medicine) relating to sleep-walking

Gotcha.

And of course:

somnambulism – Wiktionary

From Latin somnus (“sleep”) + ambulo (“to walk”) + -ism.

The word I was actually unfamiliar with in the Magister’s passage was Ambien:

Zolpidem – Wikipedia

Zolpidem (originally marketed as Ambien and available worldwide under many brand names) is a sedative primarily used for the treatment of insomnia. It works quickly, usually within 15 minutes, and has a short half-life of two to three hours. Zolpidem has not adequately demonstrated effectiveness in maintaining sleep, unless delivered in a controlled-release (CR) form. However, it is effective in initiating sleep. Its hypnotic effects are similar to those of the benzodiazepine class of drugs.

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