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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Bogus   Mon Aug 08, 2016 8:42 pm

Word of the Day: Bogus
  
  
adjective  


 

Definition

: not genuine : counterfeit, sham

Examples

"Any time you are provided with anything that is supposedly 'free' or 'complimentary,' including a security monitoring service for a year, when you do not actually know if your personal data has been compromised, it's likely a bogus scheme to steal your identity." — Martha R. Tromberg, The (Jackson) Florida Times-Union, 5 July 2016

"Stars on the downward trajectory of their careers often try to sign with teams that have a chance to win, especially if those stars haven't won a ring. People know it's bogus but smile and share in the warmth of unfinished business getting finished." — Rick Morrissey, The Chicago Sun-Times, 6 July 2016

 

Did You Know?

You may know bogus as a slang word meaning "uncool" or simply "no good," but did you know that bogus has actually been a part of English since the early 1800s? Not only was the word coined then, it was actually doing some coining of its own, so to speak. Back then, a bogus was a machine used to make counterfeit coins. No one knows for sure how this coin-copying contraption got its name, but before long bogus had also become a popular noun for funny money itself or for a fraudulent imitation of any kind. The more general "phony" adjective began being used about the same time.
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Rectify   Tue Aug 09, 2016 7:53 pm

Word of the Day: Rectify

  
verb  

 

Definition

1 : to set right : remedy

2 : to purify (as alcohol) especially by repeated or fractional distillation

3 : to correct by removing errors

Examples

After Jennifer pointed out to the store manager that she was not charged the sale price for her purchase, he promised to rectify the situation and refund her the difference.

"'At the time I couldn't say that there was a place in all of Asia that made real, slow-cooked barbecue,' he said. So Walker rectified that; he opened Bubba’s in 2006, a Texas-style barbecue joint." — Joshua Hunt, The Texas Monthly, 4 July 2016



Did You Know?

Which of the following words does not share its ancestry with rectify—direct, regimen, obstruct, correct, or resurrection? Like rectify, four of these words ultimately come from Latin regere, which can mean "to lead straight," "to direct," or "to rule." Correct and direct come from regere via Latin corrigere and dirigere, respectively. Resurrection comes from Latin resurgere, whose stem surgere, meaning "to rise," is a combination of sub- and regere. Regimen is from Latin regimen ("position of authority," "direction," "set of rules"), itself from regere. And rectify is from regere by way of Latin rectus ("right"). Obstruct is the only one of the set that has no relation to rectify. It traces back to Latin struere, meaning "to build" or "to heap up."
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Resilience   Wed Aug 10, 2016 8:20 pm

Word of the day: Resilience

noun  


 

Definition

1 : the capability of a strained body to recover its size and shape after deformation caused especially by compressive stress

2 : an ability to recover from or adjust easily to misfortune or change

Examples

Terry and Rayanne were proud of their daughter's resilience during her search for a summer job—after being passed over for one positon, she immediately applied to five more.

"Meet three ordinary women who reached the end of their rope. But instead of giving up—after a tough adoption, drug addiction and a financial nightmare—they came back. Not just fighting, but thriving. Their inspiring stories will make you cheer for their resilience and want to learn from their life lessons." — Amanda Robb, Good Housekeeping, April 2014

  

Did You Know?

In physics, resilience is the ability of an elastic material (such as rubber or animal tissue) to absorb energy (such as from a blow) and release that energy as it springs back to its original shape. The recovery that occurs in this phenomenon can be viewed as analogous to a person's ability to bounce back after a jarring setback. Author P. G. Wodehouse took note of this when he wrote: "There is in certain men … a quality of resilience, a sturdy refusal to acknowledge defeat, which aids them as effectively in affairs of the heart as in encounters of a sterner and more practical kind." The word resilience derives from the present participle of the Latin verb resilire, meaning "to jump back" or "to recoil." The base of resilire is salire, a verb meaning "to leap" that also pops up in the etymologies of such sprightly words as sally and somersault.


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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Filial   Thu Aug 11, 2016 7:34 pm

Word of the Day: Filial

  
adjective  


 

Definition

1 : of, relating to, or befitting a son or daughter

2 : having or assuming the relation of a child or offspring

Examples

Margaret's sense of filial responsibility is only part of her motivation for carrying on her parents' business; she also loves the work.

"Though initially reluctant, the old champ agrees to coach the young boxer, and they form a filial bond that grows in tandem with the stakes they face." — Sandy Cohen, The Post & Courier (Charleston, South Carolina), 24 Nov. 2016


Did You Know?

Filial is descended from Latin filius, meaning "son," and filia, meaning "daughter," and in English (where it has been used since at least the 14th century) it has always applied to both sexes. The word has long carried the dutiful sense "owed to a parent by a child," as found in such phrases as "filial respect" and "filial piety." These days it can also be used more generally for any emotion or behavior of a child to a parent. You might suspect that filia is also the source of the word filly, meaning "a young female horse" or "a young girl," but it isn't. Rather, filly is from Old Norse fylja.
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Zest   Sat Aug 13, 2016 7:08 am

Word of the Day: Zest
 
noun  


 

Definition

1 : a piece of the peel of a citrus fruit (such as an orange or lemon) used as flavoring

2 : an enjoyably exciting quality : piquancy

3 : keen enjoyment : relish, gusto

Examples

Healthy and active as a senior citizen, Richard had a zest for life, a desire to travel and see the world, and a perpetual interest in trying new things.

"Basically, chocolate powder gets sprinkled on top of your cappuccino. It may not seem like much, but the sugary bitterness from the chocolate adds zest to the beverage." — Jean Trinh, The Los Angeles Magazine, 24 June 2016

 



Did You Know?

Zest can spice up your life—fitting for a word that we learned from the world of cooking. We borrowed the term from a source that has given English speakers many culinary delights: French cuisine. The French used the form zest (nowadays they spell it zeste) to refer to orange or lemon peel used to flavor food or drinks. English speakers developed a taste for the fruit flavoring and adopted the term zest in the late 1600s. By the early 1700s, they had started using the word to refer to any quality that adds enjoyment to something in the same way that the zest of an orange or lemon adds flavor to food.
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PostSubject: Word of the Day : Vestige   Sun Aug 14, 2016 10:48 am

Word of the Day : Vestige
   
noun  


 

Definition

1 a : a trace, mark, or visible sign left by something (such as an ancient city or a condition or practice) vanished or lost

b : the smallest quantity or trace

2 : a bodily part or organ that is small and degenerate or imperfectly developed in comparison to one more fully developed in an earlier stage of the individual, in a past generation, or in closely related forms

Examples

There was not a vestige of doubt in the jurors' minds that the defendant was guilty.

"The United States is fully lifting the ban on the sale of military equipment to Vietnam that has been in place for some 50 years.… [T]his change will ensure that Vietnam has access to the equipment it needs to defend itself and removes a lingering vestige of the Cold War." — Barack Obama, quoted on CNN International, 23 May 2016

  

Did You Know?

Vestige is derived via Middle French from the Latin noun vestigium, meaning "footstep, footprint, or track." Like trace and track, vestige can refer to a perceptible sign made by something that has now passed. Of the three words, vestige is the most likely to apply to a tangible reminder, such as a fragment or remnant of what is past and gone. Trace, on the other hand, may suggest any line, mark, or discernible effect ("the snowfield is pockmarked with the traces of caribou"). Track implies a continuous line that can be followed ("the fossilized tracks of dinosaurs").
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Tog   Mon Aug 15, 2016 7:53 am

Word of the Day: Tog
 
  
verb  

 

Definition

: to dress especially in fine clothing — usually used with up or out

Examples

Christine smiled as she took pictures of her teenage son, who was togged out in a tuxedo and standing next to his prom date.

"Togged out in his driving gear and trademark tinted goggles, and sporting a jaunty mustache, Walter C. Baker cut a dashing, even raffish figure." — Michael W. Dominowski, The Staten Island (New York) Advance, 26 May 2013

 

Did You Know?

The history of tog is a true rags-to-riches tale that begins with the slang of vagabonds and thieves—specifically, with the noun togeman, an old (and now obsolete) slang word meaning "cloak." By the early 18th century, the noun tog, a shortened form of togeman, was being used as a slang word for "coat," and before the century's end the plural form togs was being used to mean "clothing." The verb tog debuted shortly after togs and was immediately in style as a word for dressing up. You may be wondering if there's a connection between tog and toga, and if so, you are right on track. Togeman is believed to be derived in part from toga, which means "cloak" or "mantle" in Latin.
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Soul mate   Mon Aug 15, 2016 8:01 pm

Word of the Day: Soul mate
 
  
noun  

 

Definition

1 : a person who is perfectly suited to another in temperament

2 : a person who strongly resembles another in attitudes or beliefs

Examples

They have been best friends and soul mates for nearly two decades.

"Decades of incredible songs performed by a multitalented ensemble sweep the audience through the musical journey of [Johnny Cash's] life, including gospel, folk, country and rock, along with incredible duets with his soul mate, June Carter." — The Chicago Daily Herald, 13 June 2016

Did You Know?

The earliest known use of soul mate is found in an 1822 letter from English poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge to "a Young Lady" in which he writes, "To be happy in Marriage Life, nay … in order not to be miserable, you must have a Soul-mate as well as a House or a Yoke-mate…." The word yokemate is used to refer to someone who is figuratively yoked to another, such as a close associate or companion, or, as Coleridge uses the word, a spouse. Coleridge's advice to the recipient of his letter, then, is that she should not simply settle for a husband, but rather for a person whose character and sensibilities are of a nature suitable to her own. Soul mate is now often used by English speakers to describe those with whom our bonds of affection are marked by a strong sense of like-mindedness and intertwined affinities.
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Dedication   Tue Aug 16, 2016 7:54 pm

Word of the Day: Dedication
  
noun  
 

Definition

1 : a devoting or setting aside for a particular purpose or use

2 : a name and often a message prefixed to a literary, musical, or artistic production in tribute to a person or cause

3 : self-sacrificing devotion

4 : a ceremony to mark the official completion or opening of something (as a building)

Examples

"Each of my days with my children embodies my dedication when I am open to them. Sitting around our kitchen table over dinner … we are giving thanks, talking to each other, laughing…." — Kathryn Black, in The Imperfect Mom, 2006

"My wife would say my best habit is ... my work ethic. She's impressed by my dedication." — Jimmie Johnson, quoted in Good Housekeeping, April 2012
 

Did You Know?

The word dedication first appears in the 14th century as a name for the solemn act of dedicating something, such as a calendar day or a church, to a divine being or to a sacred use. The word—formed from the Latin past participle of dedicare, meaning "to dedicate"—did not take hold in secular contexts until a few centuries later when English speakers began using it to refer to the act of devoting time and energy to a particular purpose. One of the earliest writers to do so is William Shakespeare. "His life I gave him, and did thereto ad / My love without retention or restraint, / All his in dedication….," proclaims his character Antonio in Twelfth Night. Dedication has also come to describe the quality of being loyal or devoted to a cause, ideal, or purpose. Nowadays, people are commonly spoken of as having a dedication to his or her family or work.
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Dunnage   Wed Aug 17, 2016 8:15 pm

Word of the Day: Dunnage
 
  
noun  

 

Definition

1 : loose materials used to support and protect cargo in a ship's hold; also : padding in a shipping container

2 : baggage

Examples

The listed weight on the shipping order did not account for the container and dunnage.

"There are … efforts to reduce impact on the environment, with employees reusing as much of the packing material as possible. Boxes can be reused or turned into dunnage to use in packing." — The Crossville (Tennessee) Chronicle, 26 Nov. 2012

 

Did You Know?

Etymologists don't know the exact origin of dunnage. Some have pointed out the similarity of the word to dünne twige, a Low German term meaning "brushwood," but no one has ever proven the two are related. Others have speculated that it derives from Dunlop, the name of a famous cheese-making town in Scotland; however, neither the town nor the cheese has any connection to dunnage. Truth be told, though dunnage has been with us since the 15th century, its etymological history remains a mystery.
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Panoptic   Thu Aug 18, 2016 8:28 pm

Word of the Day: Panoptic


  
adjective  


 

Definition

: being or presenting a comprehensive or panoramic view

Examples

The new security cameras installed in the jewelry store capture panoptic views of the entrance and display cases.

"Interweaving the narratives of an aristocratic uptown family, an underground punk band, a Long Island adolescent, a black gay aspiring writer, and a journalist determined to uncover the obscure connections between them all, the more-than-900-page novel … casts a panoptic lens on 1970s New York City…." — Lauren Christensen, Vanity Fair, October 2015

  

Did You Know?

The establishment of panoptic in the English language can be attributed to two inventions known as panopticons. The more well-known panopticon was conceived by the English philosopher Jeremy Bentham in 1787. Bentham’s panopticon was a circular prison with cells arranged around a central tower from which guards could see the inmates at all times. The other panopticon, also created in the 18th century, was a device containing pictures of attractions, such as European capitals, that people viewed through an opening. Considering the views that both inventions gave, it is not hard to see why panoptic (a word derived from Greek panoptes, meaning "all-seeing") was being used by the early 19th century.
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Fret   Fri Aug 19, 2016 9:14 pm

Word of the Day: Fret

Definition

1 a : to eat or gnaw into : wear, corrode; also : fray
b : rub, chafe
c : to make by wearing away
2 : to become vexed or worried
3 : agitate, ripple
Examples

"You shouldn't fret so much over your wardrobe," Liza said. "You look great no matter what you wear."
"Not so long ago independent booksellers fretted about the Nooks and the Kindles and the iPad—digital reading devices. And if that didn't scare them, the trend of reading everything on a phone was worrisome." — Darrell Ehrlick, The Billings (Montana) Gazette, 22 July 2016



Did You Know?

Since its first use centuries ago, fret has referred to an act of eating, especially when done by animals—in particular, small ones. You might speak, for example, of moths fretting your clothing. Like eat, fret also developed figurative senses to describe actions that corrode or wear away. A river could be said to "fret away" at its banks or something might be said to be "fretted out" with time or age. Fret can also be applied to emotional experiences so that something that "eats away at us" might be said to "fret the heart or mind." This use developed into the specific meaning of "vex" or "worry" with which we often use fret today.
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Namby-pamby   Sat Aug 20, 2016 8:00 pm

Word of the Day: Namby-pamby

  
adjective  

 

Definition

1 : lacking in character or substance : insipid

2 : weak, indecisive

Examples

John complained that the movie was a namby-pamby romance with too much dialogue and not enough action.

"I go to a barber for a haircut and clip my own nails, and would rather smell broccoli cooking for a week than go to some namby-pamby spa place to get … my body kneaded like a loaf of over-fermented Wonder Bread." — Michael Penkava, The Northwest Herald (Crystal Lake, Illinois), 27 Feb. 2016


Did You Know?

Eighteenth-century poets Alexander Pope and Henry Carey didn't think much of their contemporary Ambrose Philips. His sentimental, singsong verses were too childish and simple for their palates. In 1726, Carey came up with the rhyming nickname Namby-Pamby (playing on Ambrose) to parody Philips: "Namby-Pamby's doubly mild / Once a man and twice a child ... / Now he pumps his little wits / All by little tiny bits." In 1729, Pope borrowed the nickname to take his own satirical jab at Philips in the poem "The Dunciad." Before long, namby-pamby was being applied to any piece of writing that was insipidly precious, simple, or sentimental, and later to anyone considered pathetically weak or indecisive.
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Hypocorism   Mon Aug 22, 2016 7:49 am

Word of the Day: Hypocorism

  
noun  


 

Definition

1 : a pet name

2 : the use of pet names

Examples

People began to refer to the elusive and mysterious Loch Ness monster by the hypocorism "Nessie" in the 1940s.

"… the use of hypocorisms … is on the decline (only my Aunt Dorothy is still called Toots), and terms of endearment have come under suspicion ('Call me Dollboat or Sweetie-Pie one more time, Mr. Snodgrass, and you've got a harassment suit on your hands')." — William Safire, The New York Times, 27 Sept. 1992

 

Did You Know?

In Late Latin and Greek, the words hypocorisma and hypokorisma had the same meaning as hypocorism does in English today. They in turn evolved from the Greek verb hypokorizesthai ("to call by pet names"), which itself comes from korizesthai ("to caress"). Hypocorism joined the English language in the mid-19th century and was once briefly a buzzword among linguists, who used it rather broadly to mean "adult baby talk"—that is, the altered speech adults use when supposedly imitating babies. Once the baby talk issue faded, hypocorism settled back into being just a fancy word for a pet name. Pet names can be diminutives like "Johnny" for "John," endearing terms such as "honey-bunch," or, yes, names from baby talk, like "Nana" for "Grandma."
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Lenient   Mon Aug 22, 2016 8:41 pm

Word of the Day: Lenient

  
adjective  

 

Definition

1 : exerting a soothing or easing influence : relieving pain or stress

2 : of mild and tolerant disposition; especially : indulgent

Examples

Because Kevin didn't have any past violations on his driving record, the officer decided to be lenient and let him off with a written warning.

"In February, he pleaded guilty to a bribery count and a tax count. His attorney … has said federal prosecutors have recommended a lenient sentence in exchange for his cooperation." — Jimmie E. Gates, The Clarion-Ledger (Jackson, Mississippi), 18 July 2016

 


Did You Know?

Lenient is a word with a soothing history. It derives from the Latin verb lenire, meaning "to soothe" or "to soften" (itself from lenis, meaning "soft or mild"). The first, now archaic, sense of lenient referred to something soothing that relieved pain and stress. That meaning was shared by lenitive, an earlier derivative of lenire that was commonly used with electuary (a "lenitive electuary" being a medicated paste prepared with honey or another sweet and used by veterinarians to alleviate pain in the mouth). Linguists also borrowed lenis to describe speech sounds that are softened—for instance, the "t" sound in gutter is lenis. By way of comparison, the "t" sound in toe is fortis.
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Journeyman    Tue Aug 23, 2016 8:07 pm

Word of the Day: Journeyman
 
  
noun  

 

Definition

1 : a worker who has learned a trade and works for another person usually by the day

2 : an experienced reliable worker, athlete, or performer especially as distinguished from one who is brilliant or colorful

Examples

"I started working exclusively as an actor when I was 25 years old…. I was a journeyman actor, working here and there. And I loved it." — Bryan Cranston, quoted in The Los Angeles Times, 28 Feb. 2016

"Rich Hill is 36 and likely to be the most sought-after pitcher on the trade market, but he claims he doesn't see it that way. The transformation from journeyman to a pitcher with electric stuff has been stunning at his age." — Nick Cafardo, The Boston Globe, 10 July 2016


Did You Know?

The journey in journeyman refers to a sense of the familiar word not often used anymore: "a day's labor." This sense of journey was first used in the 14th century. When journeyman appeared the following century, it originally referred to a person who, having learned a handicraft or trade through an apprenticeship, worked for daily wages. In the 16th century, journeyman picked up a figurative (and mainly deprecatory) sense; namely, "one who drudges for another." These days, however, journeyman has little to do with drudgery, and lots to do with knowing a trade inside out.
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Insinuate   Wed Aug 24, 2016 8:00 pm

Word of the Day: Insinuate
 
  
verb  

 

Definition

1 a : to introduce (as an idea) gradually or in a subtle, indirect, or covert way

b : to impart or suggest in an artful or indirect way : imply

2 : to introduce (as oneself) by stealthy, smooth, or artful means

Examples

"They are confident buildings, but not boastful ones. They have a way of insinuating themselves into the landscape, behaving as if they’ve always been there." — Karrie Jacobs, Architect, 18 June 2013

"Pokemon Go players couldn't catch much on Saturday. That's because the game kept crashing. … [A] group called PoodleCorp claimed responsibility for the server crash in a series of tweets. The group also insinuated that another attack on the game was imminent." — Ahiza Garcia, CNN Wire, 16 July 2016

 
Did You Know?

The meaning of insinuate is similar to that of another verb, suggest. Whether you suggest or insinuate something, you are conveying an idea indirectly. But although these two words share the same basic meaning, each gets the idea across in a different way. When you suggest something, you put it into the mind by associating it with other ideas, desires, or thoughts. You might say, for example, that a book's title suggests what the story is about. The word insinuate, on the other hand, usually includes a sense that the idea being conveyed is unpleasant, or that it is being passed along in a sly or underhanded way ("She insinuated that I cheated").
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Notch   Thu Aug 25, 2016 8:25 pm

Word of the Day: Notch
 
  
noun  



 

Definition

1 a : a V-shaped indentation

b : a slit made to serve as a record

c : a rounded indentation cut into the pages of a book on the edge opposite the spine

2 : a deep close pass : gap

3 : degree, step

Examples

The angle of the futon can be adjusted by inserting the pin into one of three notches.

"You're about to start a race or step onstage, and you want to knock it out of the park. … Revving up … is pretty easy: Do a few jumping jacks, or whatever gets your blood pumping. Need to take things down a notch (or 20)? Inhale deeply. Research shows that it can significantly calm you down." — Jeanine Detz, Self, July/August 2016

 



Did You Know?

Occasionally, you might hear a child ask for a "napple," as in "I would like a napple," mistaking the phrase "an apple" for "a napple." A similar error is believed to be behind notch, which may have resulted from a misdivision of "an otch." (Otch is a noun that is assumed to have existed in earlier English as a borrowing of Middle French oche, meaning "an incision made to keep a record.") Notch would not be alone in developing from such a mistake. The words newt and nickname were formed, respectively, from misdivisions of "an ewte" and "an ekename." Going in the other direction, umpire first appears in Middle English as oumpere, a mistaken rendering of "a noumpere."
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Guttural   Fri Aug 26, 2016 8:10 pm

Word of the Day: Guttural
  
  
adjective  



 

Definition

1 : articulated in the throat

2 : velar

3 : being or marked by utterance that is strange, unpleasant, or disagreeable

Examples

The only response we could get from him was an inarticulate guttural grunt.

"The guttural yells echoing off New Jersey's Lake Mercer conveyed the gravity of college rowing's biggest day Sunday: the Intercollegiate Rowing Championship." — Brian Towey, The Seattle Times, 6 June 2016

 

Did You Know?

Though it is now used to describe many sounds or utterances which strike the listener as harsh or disagreeable, the adjective guttural was originally applied only to sounds and utterances produced in the throat. This is reflected in the word's Latin root—guttur, meaning "throat." Despite the similarity in sound, guttural is not related to the English word gutter, which comes (by way of Anglo-French) from Latin gutta, meaning "drop."
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Plinth   Sat Aug 27, 2016 9:23 pm

Word of the Day: Plinth
 
  
noun  

 

Definition

1 : the lowest part of the base of an architectural column

2 : a usually square block serving as a base; broadly : any of various bases or lower parts

3 : a course of stones forming a continuous foundation or base course

Examples

An empty plinth remains where the statue of the toppled dictator once commanded.

"Fabio Mauri (1926-2009) grew up in Mussolini-era Italy and his art consistently examines the ways in which the traumas of war and fascism are assimilated by history. For the most part it's the simpler works that resonate—such as a lone artillery shell on a plinth." — Time Out, 26 Jan. 2016

 
Did You Know?

"These ivy-clad arcades — / These mouldering plinths ... are they all — / All of the famed, and the colossal left…?" In these lines from "The Coliseum," Edgar Allan Poe alludes to a practical feature of classical architecture. The plinth serves the important purpose of raising the base of the column it supports above the ground, thus protecting it from dampness and mold. The humble plinth is usually a mere thick block. It's humbly named, too, for the Greek word plinthos means simply "tile" or "brick." English writers have used plinth, a shortened version of the Latin form plinthus, since the mid-16th century. The word's meaning was later extended to bases for statues, vases, or busts.
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Embellish   Sun Aug 28, 2016 7:44 pm

Word of the Day: Embellish
 
  
verb  

 

Definition

1 : to make beautiful with ornamentation : decorate

2 : to heighten the attractiveness of by adding decorative or fanciful details : enhance

Examples

Kevin later admitted that he may have embellished the truth about the size of the dog that chased him out of the yard.

"On Snapchat, where users embellish their selfies with emoji, crayon scribbles, and elaborate 'lenses' that cover their faces with virtual masks, marketers like McDonalds are seizing the opportunity to write their messages across people’s faces." — Amanda Hess, The New York Times, 20 June 2016


Did You Know?

Like its synonyms adorn, ornament, and garnish, embellish means to make something beautiful by the addition of a decorative or fanciful feature. Traditionally, the word is used specifically to stress the addition of superfluous or adventitious ornament, as in "The printer embellished the page with a floral border." Embellish differs from its synonyms, however, in that it is sometimes used in a euphemistic way to refer to the inclusion of details that are not necessarily true to make a story sound more appealing. The word derives via Middle English from the Anglo-French verb embelir, from en- and bel ("beautiful").
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Rarefied   Mon Aug 29, 2016 8:13 pm

Word of the Day: Rarefied
  
  
adjective  

 

Definition

1 : being less dense

2 : of, relating to, or interesting to a select group : esoteric

3 : very high

Examples

Cartography is one of those rarefied fields at which only a select few can actually earn a living.

"He was known for photographing the most rarefied parties and galas but never partaking of even an hors d'oeuvre or sip of champagne." — Robin Givhan, The Washington Post, 27 June 2016

 



Did You Know?

Rarefied was formed from the verb rarefy, which derives from a combination of the Latin rarus ("thin" or "rare") with facere ("to make") and has meant "to make thin" since the 14th century. In its original uses back in the 1500s, the adjective rarefied was on the lean side too; it meant "made less dense" (as in "the fog lifted and we could breathe more easily in the rarefied air"). By the 17th century, rarefy had gained the sense "to refine or purify," and over time rarefied followed suit.
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Collude   Tue Aug 30, 2016 8:10 pm

Word of the Day: Collude
  
  
verb  

 

Definition

: conspire, plot

Examples

"Two forestry companies colluded for more than a decade to control the prices of toilet paper and other products following a meeting at a golf course to end a price war, according to Chile's competitive practices regulator." — The Observer-Dispatch (Utica, New York), 30 Oct. 2015

"If you collude in business or if you collude in the stock market, they put you in jail." — Donald Trump, speaking on MSNBC, 25 Apr. 2016

 

Did You Know?

Our English "lude" words (allude, collude, delude, elude, and prelude) are based on the Latin verb ludere, meaning "to play." Collude dates back to 1525 and combines ludere and the prefix col-, meaning "with" or "together." The verb is younger than the related noun collusion, which appeared sometime in the 14th century with the specific meaning "secret agreement or cooperation." Despite their playful history, collude and collusion have always suggested deceit or trickery rather than good-natured fun.
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Trepidation   Thu Sep 01, 2016 8:44 am

Word of the Day: Trepidation
 
  
noun  


 

Definition

: timorous uncertain agitation : apprehension

Examples

Fran's trepidation going into the interview dissipated quickly, and her confidence and poise led her to getting offered the job a week later.

"The couple's trepidation isn't about how the state would handle the rare orchids.… They simply are worried that the state would not pay them what their land is worth, if … officials … decide to try and purchase a portion of their land to widen Route 22." — Ronnie Wachter, The Chicago Tribune, 1 Aug. 2016

 
Did You Know?

If you've ever trembled with fright, you know something of both the sensation and etymology of trepidation. The word comes from the Latin verb trepidare, which means "to tremble." When it first appeared in English in the early 1600s, it meant "tremulous motion" or "tremor." Around the same time, English speakers also started using the "nervous agitation" sense of trepidation that we use today.
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PostSubject: Word of the Day: Oenophile   Thu Sep 01, 2016 8:44 pm

Word of the Day: Oenophile
 
  
noun  
 

Definition: a lover or connoisseur of wine

Examples

Serious oenophiles will not be impressed with this particular wine, but it should be up to the standards of less-discriminating consumers.

"Founded in 1992, New Orleans Wine and Food Experience has definitely earned its place as an event that oenophiles, gourmets and any combination thereof mark on their to-do list each year." — Sue Strachan, The Times-Picayune (New Orleans, Louisiana), 28 May 2016
 


Did You Know?

"It has become quite a common proverb that in wine there is truth," wrote the 1st-century A.D. Roman scholar, Pliny the Elder. The truth about the word wine is that it goes back to Latin vinum, but it is also a distant relative of the Greek word for wine, which is oinos. Indeed, Latin borrowed from the Greek to create a combining form that means "wine," oeno-. Modern French speakers combined oeno- with -phile (Greek for "lover of") to create oenophile before we adopted it from them in the mid-1800s. Oenophiles are sure to know oenology (now more often spelled enology) as the science of wine making and oenologist (now more often enologist) for one versed in oenology.
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