Weekly Word: Moonstruck

The adjective moonstruck means “mentally deranged, supposedly by the influence of the moon” or “dreamily romantic”. Since people who are in love are also described as crazy, it’s not so surprising that this word refers to both at the same time. Love, insanity, the moon – this word has a dramatic story built right into its definition! That’s why it’s a perfect title for a movie:


Even though many people seem to like this word, it actually doesn’t show up that often (except when referring to the 1987 film starring Cher and Nicolas Cage). Maybe the word’s strong association with the film is precisely why writers don’t use it much anymore. Did Hollywood ruin this word forever? Will people always think of Cher when they see the word moonstruck?