This is topic Word of the Day in forum Books, Films, Food and Culture at Hatrack River Forum.

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Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

This was jack's idea.
quote:
Dobie you are funny, but have you considered getting one of those word a day calanders? You might be able to start a thread and see how many people can use your new daily word logically in their posts, unless of course you enjoy working the same one to death.

Actually, I'm using the "Word of the Day" from Merriam Webster's Online Dictionary.
The Word of the Day for June 27 is:

fruition \froo-IH-shun\ (noun)
1 : pleasurable use or possession : enjoyment
2 : the state of bearing fruit
3 : realization, accomplishment

Posted by KarlEd (Member # 571) on :

So I guess that means Jack's idea has come to fruition.

[This message has been edited by KarlEd (edited June 27, 2001).]

Posted by TheSnitch (Member # 1934) on :

**Looks Dobie up and down**

My lust for Dobie will soon come to fruition....

Posted by KarlEd (Member # 571) on :

Actually, I tried twice to post this before and got the same freaky error. On my third try at posting, my efforts achieved fruition.

Let's just say it was a tie.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

You can use the word anywhere you want.

Posted by Paul Goldner (Member # 1910) on :

My plan to conquer the world will reach fruition in three days

Posted by Lurking Pod (Member # 2061) on :

i've always liked extemporaneous

Posted by Lurking Pod (Member # 2061) on :

[he says offhand]

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for June 28 is:

full of danger or risk : hazardous

Posted by Ralphie (Member # 1565) on :

the flatness of my butt leads me to believe that constant sitting in front the computer could be parlous for my coccyx.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

I think we should have to use ALL previous words of the day in a sentence. For example:

His get rich schemes seemed always to result in parlous ventures which failed to come to fruition.

Posted by Ralphie (Member # 1565) on :

the flatness of my butt -due to the fact that existential-like willing of a rounded posterior never came to fruition- leads me to believe that constant sitting in front of the computer could be parlous for my coccyx.

Posted by lost (Member # 1512) on :

Ralphie could be parlous to my plans of being seen as the wittiest human in the world coming to fruition.

Posted by Theo (Member # 964) on :

Yeah but "Smoking has been found to be parlous to your health" just doesn't have the same sting now does it?

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

Technically it's now June 30, but I didn't get around to posting it yesterday and, since I haven't been to bed yet let's just say it's still the 29th.

The Word of the Day for June 29 is:

Walter Mitty \wawl-ter-MIH-tee\ (noun)
: a commonplace unadventurous person who seeks escape
from reality through daydreaming

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

His get rich schemes seemed always to result in parlous ventures which failed to come to fruition, but only in his Walter-Mitty dreams.

Posted by nik (Member # 2114) on :

My other self (the mean, incopationate self) is always being a Walter-mitty, thinging of parlous plans that will never come to fruition.

Thats a good thing.

Posted by aka (Member # 139) on :

Ok, it's the 30th! What's the new word?

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for June 30 is:

: of, relating to, or resembling the orchids
: showy, ostentatious

Posted by nik (Member # 2114) on :

My other self is being a Walter-mitty again, thinking of a parlous plans to kill my orchidaceous flowers because they will never come to fruition.
(though i really dont have a garden, my mom does. HEHEHEHEHE <rubs hands> )

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 1 is:

dudgeon \DUH-jun\ (noun)
a fit or state of indignation

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

My orchidaceous weakness -- Walter Mitty-like convoluted escapism -- which led me to one parlous adventure after another -- had its fruition in Father's high dudgeon as he grounded me for life.

Posted by Valentine (Member # 1037) on :

Due to my own dudgeon towards some people in other areas of the website, I have taken residence with the orchidaceous people here in this forum.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 2 is:

: of, relating to, living, or occurring in the open sea :
oceanic

Posted by bonduca (Member # 2011) on :

: of, relating to, living, or occurring in the open sea :
oceanic

Hortense so shamelessly and aggressively pursued men on cruise ships that they called her the "Pelagic Plague."

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Mr. Limpet, the pelagic version of Walter Mitty, was a story of a fish-transformed man whose boss was perpetually in a state of dudgeon and whose parlous escapades would end in positive fruition despite the orchidaceous route of their unfolding.

Posted by Theo (Member # 964) on :

Say that 10 times fast...

Posted by Ralphie (Member # 1565) on :

My Walter Mitty tendencies to escape into a world where my buttocks is not flat (but rather retains enough water to give it a pleasant, almost pelagic quality) often leaves me in high dudgeon as I will never have an orchidaceous butt and these daydreams are more than parlous to my self-esteem considering these longings will never come to fruition.

Posted by Valentine (Member # 1037) on :

My dreams of becoming a pelagic elf will most likely never come to fruition. It is a dream that is just too orchidaceous to come true. Therefore I must instead live in a Walter Mitty haze.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 3 is:

succinct \suk-SINKT or suh-SINKT\ (adjective) marked by compact, precise expression without wasted
words
concise

Posted by ludosti (Member # 1772) on :

It is a parlous adventure, not one for the Walter Mitty among us who would be thrust into a state of dudgeon, to attempt to succinctly describe the orchidaceous way in which plans for pelagic conquest come to fruition.

Posted by Ralphie (Member # 1565) on :

though this is by no means the most succinct way of explaining my situation, my Walter Mitty tendencies to escape into a world where my buttocks is not flat (but rather retains enough water to give it a pleasant, almost pelagic quality) often leaves me in high dudgeon as I will never have an orchidaceous butt and these daydreams are more than parlous to my self-esteem considering these longings will never come to fruition.

(is that cheating?)

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

That reminds me, people really need to start posting on the two-word thread again!

Posted by jehovoid (Member # 2014) on :

Seeing that it would never come to fruition, that the plan was too parlous and that he was too much a Walter Mitty, he watched his orchidaceous garlands wither and went into a dudgeon over his distance from a pelagic geography succinctly cursing the desert surrounding him.

49 words, roughly 7 words per word of the day, and one grammatical construction for each word of the day. And the sentence doesn't even make sense, it could probably be three sentences. Tough going. I can't wait to get more words.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 4 is:

demarche \day-MAHRSH or dih-MAHRSH\ (noun)
1 a : a course of action : maneuver b : a diplomatic or political initiative or maneuver
2 : a petition or protest presented through diplomatic
channels

Posted by jehovoid (Member # 2014) on :

Aside from that, ludosti's is probably the best so far, and I actually remember reading some excerpt from the Secret Life of Walter Mitty in a textbook in 5th grade, I think. He was imagining himself in a courtroom being questioned about the shooting of someone and the attorney was questioning him and found out that he was out of practical shooting range and his arm was broken anyway so there was no way he could've been the shooter and then he says, "I shot him left-handed" or something and everyone was amazed at his talent and shocked that he was the killer and it made him look really cool blah blah blah, it was a pretty good excerpt as I recall. Maybe it was in 7th grade...

Posted by jehovoid (Member # 2014) on :

The parlous and pelagic demarche, certaintly the product of a Walter Mitty, never came to fruition and sent the captain into a dudgeon for it was orchidaceous and in no way succinct.

32 words, I am pleased. However, I didn't use the words in order of appearence like I did last time, and the sentence is even more unclear.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

Pay special attention to the second definition of this word.

The Word of the Day for July 5 is:

Aesopian \ee-SOH-pee-un or ee-SAH-pee-un\ (adjective) 1 : of, relating to, or characteristic of Aesop or his
fables
2 : conveying an innocent meaning to an outsider but a
hidden meaning to a member of a conspiracy or underground
movement

Posted by aka (Member # 139) on :

These are some cool words you are coming up with!

Posted by Jeffrey Getzin (Member # 1972) on :

I knew a girl once who had her Aesopian tubes tied. ;-)

Jeff

Posted by All-Powerful Voice (Member # 2090) on :

Jeff, I just thought of a great reply to that last post but it might just be a little too offensive, so I won't post it.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 6 is:
shaggy-dog story \SHAG-ee-DOG-STOR-ee\ (noun)

: a long-drawn-out circumstantial story concerning an
inconsequential happening that impresses the teller as humorous
but the hearer as boring and pointless;
also : a similar humorous story whose humor lies in the pointlessness or irrelevance of the
punch line

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 7 is:

plenitude \PLEH-nuh-tood or PLEH-nuh-tyood (oo as in "food")\
(noun)
1 : the quality or state of being full : completeness
2 : a great sufficiency : abundance

Posted by Ralphie (Member # 1565) on :

there is no possible way to keep the subject of my flat butt and use all of the words of the day in one sentence. i give up.

Posted by ludosti (Member # 1772) on :

When presented with the orchidaceous demarche, which vaguely resembled a shaggy-dog story of pelagic conquest, the Waler Mitty was thrown into a fit of dudgeon, realizing that a plenitude of parlous mishaps would prevent its fruition quite succinctly, like so many Aesopian endeavors.

Hmmm....it's still one sentence, but does it make any sense?

[This message has been edited by ludosti (edited July 07, 2001).]

Posted by nik (Member # 2114) on :

if i try to do it, i run a risk of damaging my fragile brain.
Ludosti, you win

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 8 is:

: resembling the blue of the sky

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 9 is:

weltschmerz \VELT-shmairts\ (noun)
1 : a mental depression or apathy caused by comparison of
the actual state of the world to an ideal state
2 : a mood of sentimental sadness

Posted by Nato (Member # 1448) on :

'Tis a pity that it will not be July 9th for me for a few hours yet. I suppose I have that length of time to ponder the meaning of weltschmerz before I use it.

Posted by Jeffrey Getzin (Member # 1972) on :

Oy weltschmerz! ;-)

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

That was you?

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 10 is:

recuse \rih-KYOOZ\ (verb)
: to disqualify (oneself) as a judge in a particular case;
:broadly, to remove (oneself) from participation to avoid a
conflict of interest

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 11 is:

rodomontade \rah-duh-mun-TAYD or rah-duh-mun-TAHD\ (noun)
1 : a bragging speech
2 : vain boasting or bluster : rant

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 12 is:

: containing gold

Posted by Borommakot (Member # 2160) on :

Unbenounced to the captain of the ship, the chest in the baggage area was auriferous.

Awaiting Cremation

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 13 is:
hastilude \HASS-tuh-lood (oo as in "food")\ (noun)
: a medieval joust
: spear play

Posted by Jeffrey Getzin (Member # 1972) on :

"Eyes Wide Shut" hastilude of a storyline for me to see with my parents.

Jeff

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 14 is:

: worthy of praise : commendable

Posted by Jeffrey Getzin (Member # 1972) on :

George W. Bush's record so far has been ...

George W. Bush's record so far has been ...

(one more time)

George W. Bush's record so far has been l...

Ah! I can't do it! I can't bring myself to write it, even in jest!

Jeff

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.
George W. Bush's record so far has been laudable.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 15 is:

imprimatur \im-pruh-MAH-toor or im-PRIH-muh-toor\ (noun)
1 : a license to print or publish
2 : official approval or sanction

Posted by Jeffrey Getzin (Member # 1972) on :

Posted by Miro (Member # 1178) on :

Who gave Dobie the imprimatur to start this orchidaceous and unlaudable rodomontade, which is obviously an attempt to instigate a hastilude (from which I am glad he has recused himself) over his auriferous vocabulary through a plenitude of shaggy-dog stories that are full of succinct Aesopian Walter Mitty stories, showing that despite their many demarches, the people of Hatrack are in a parlous dudgeon over the weltschmerz caused by the fact that all things pelagic are never truly crulean.

~Miro

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 16 is:

euphuism \YOO-fyuh-wih-zum\ (noun)
1 : an elegant Elizabethan literary style marked by
excessive use of balance, antithesis, and alliteration and by
frequent use of similes drawn from mythology and nature
2 : artificial elegance of language

Posted by Van Aaron (Member # 1578) on :

"artificial elegance of language"

So would using the work "euphuism" be an example of euphuism?

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 17 is:

1 : of or relating to a sensory threshold
2 : barely perceptible

Posted by firebird (Member # 1971) on :

Miro, that was fantastic. 50 points for you.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 18 is:

dauntless \DAWNT-luss or DAHNT-luss\ (adjective)
: fearless, undaunted

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 19 is:

hierophant \HYE-ruh-fant or hye-EH-ruh-funt\ (noun)
1 : a priest in ancient Greece; specifically : the chief
priest of the Eleusinian mysteries
2 a : a person who explains : commentator b : advocate

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 20 is:
qualm \KWAHM or KWAHLM\ (noun)
1 : a sudden attack of illness, faintness, or nausea
2 : a sudden access of usually disturbing emotion (as doubt or fear)
3 : a feeling of uneasiness about a point especially of conscience or propriety

Posted by Snorri (Member # 2195) on :

Nothing can adequately describe the qualms I have about posting on this thread.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 21 is:
conurbation \kah-ner-BAY-shun\ (noun)
: an aggregation or continuous network of urban communities

Posted by Miro (Member # 1178) on :

Thanks firebird. I think that's the official indicator that I have too much time on my hands.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 22 is:
burgle \BUR-gul\ (verb)
transitive senses
1 : to break into and steal from
2 : to commit burglary against
intransitive sense
: to commit burglary

Posted by Snorri (Member # 2195) on :

A burglar, setting out to burgle every single pub in the Greater London conurbation, could never finish.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 23 is:

implacable \im-PLAK-uh-bul or im-PLAY-kuh-bul\ (adjective)
: not placable : not capable of being appeased, significantly changed, or mitigated

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 24 is:
etiolate \EE-tee-uh-layt\ (verb)
1 : to bleach and alter the natural development of (a green plant) by excluding sunlight
2 a : to make pale
2 b : to deprive of natural vigor : make feeble

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 25 is:
1 : lacking social experience or grace; also : not tactful
2 : crudely made or done

Posted by Snorri (Member # 2195) on :

Artificial etiolation of human skin, as in the case of Michael Jacksom, can only be considered gauche. Do not try to change my mind; on this matter I am implacable.

Posted by Safela (Member # 2244) on :

In shop class, the wooden car I made was gauche.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 26 is:
1 : tending to cause discontent, animosity, or envy
2 : envious
3 a : of an unpleasant or objectionable nature : obnoxious
3 b : of a kind to cause harm or resentment

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 27 is:
aerie \AIR-ee or EER-ee\ (noun)
1 : the nest of a bird on a cliff or a mountaintop
2 : an elevated often secluded dwelling, structure, or position

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Mr. Carnegie, author of "How to win friends and Influence People," sat at his desk in the palatial office atop the Chrysler Building. His detractors called it the Aerie Dale. :0

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The pub with the highest elevation in England is known as the Aerie D'ale.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

After looking at the pronunciation, I'd like to change my entry to:

The only swamp denizen to brood its young on raised platforms is known, of course, as the aerie gator. It spends much of the time during incubation carrying water to the nest.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 28 is:
1 : the side of a coin or currency note bearing the chief device and lettering; broadly : a front or principal surface
2 : a counterpart having the opposite orientation or force; also : opposite

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

So, the following sentence is technically correct...

He thought he was looking at the obverse of the new Euro, when in fact quite the obverse was true.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 29 is:
chapel \CHAP-ul\ (noun)
1 : a building or a place for prayer or special religious services
2 : a religious service or assembly at a school or college

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 30 is:
synchronicity \sing-kruh-NIH-suh-tee or sin-kruh-NIH-suh-tee\ (noun)
1 : the quality or fact of being simultaneous
2 : the coincidental occurrence of events and especially psychic events that seem related but are not explained by conventional mechanisms of causality

Posted by Ela (Member # 1365) on :

Many people go to chapel on Sunday, but Jews go on Sat. and call it synagogue or temple. (Okay, unoriginal, but no one else posted. )
There is no synchronicity in going to chapel, since people of different faiths (and even people of the same faith) go at different times.

Posted by JohnKeats (Member # 1261) on :

Might as well have three pages.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for July 31 is:
proliferate \pruh-LIH-fuh-rayt\ (verb)
: to grow or increase in number rapidly

Posted by Ela (Member # 1365) on :

The number of pages of this thread is proliferating rather quickly.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 1 is:

aught \AWT or AHT\ (pronoun)
1 : anything
2 : all, everything

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 2 is:

1 : deadly or pernicious in influence
2 : foreboding evil : ominous

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 3 is:

mulct \MULKT\ (verb)
1 : to punish by a fine
2 a : to defraud especially of money : swindle
2 b : to obtain by fraud, duress, or theft

Posted by Diosmel Duda (Member # 2180) on :

The city of Sheridan (I think so), Colorado has lowered the speed limit to 35 mph on a four-lane highway and placed policemen on a constant vigil for speeders, thereby mulcting those who break the speeding law. The funds gained are used to support the financially-suffering city.

Is it right? Don't know. Legally-supported theivery. Hmmm...

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 4 is:

point man \POYNT-MAN\ (noun)
: a soldier who goes ahead of a patrol;
broadly : one who is in the forefront (as on a political issue)

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 5 is:

improvident \im-PRAH-vuh-dunt or im-PRAH-vuh-dent\ (adjective)
: not provident
: not foreseeing and providing for the future

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 6 is:

: existing or being everywhere at the same time
: constantly encountered

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 7 is:

epigram \EH-puh-gram\ (noun)
1 : a concise, often satirical poem
2 : a terse, sage, or witty saying

Posted by EarlNMeyer-Flask (Member # 1546) on :

I'll begin to add these words to my screensaver.

Posted by Diosmel Duda (Member # 2180) on :

Due to the curse of email forwarding, the epigrams of our day become ubiquitous in a matter of minutes.

Posted by JohnKeats (Member # 1261) on :

I once heard Orson Scott Card refer to a house fly as "ubiquitous."

[This message has been edited by JohnKeats (edited August 07, 2001).]

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 8 is:

prognosticate \prahg-NAHSS-tuh-kayt\ (verb)
1 : to foretell from signs and symptoms : predict
2 : presage

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 9 is:

penury \PEN-yuh-ree\ (noun)
1 : a cramping and oppressive lack of resources (as money)
:especially, severe poverty
2 : extreme frugality

Posted by EarlNMeyer-Flask (Member # 1546) on :

I prognosticate that when sufficient Hatrackers join, the current amount of server space will be penury.

Posted by NotPod (Member # 2298) on :

I live in penury..... so hungry....

::smacks the pod descending on his wallet::

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 10 is:

1 : agreeable, attractive
2 : of palatable flavor and pleasing texture : delicious

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 11 is:

war story \WOR-STOR-ee\ (noun)
: a story of a memorable personal experience typically involving an element of danger, hardship, or adventure

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 12 is:

pleonasm \PLEE-uh-naz-um\ (noun)
1 : the use of more words than those necessary to denote mere sense : redundancy
2 : an instance or example of pleonasm

Posted by Ela (Member # 1365) on :

We have had some toothsome dishes, interesting war stories (so to speak), and many instances of pleonasm here at Hatrack.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 13 is:

fealty \FEEL-tee\ (noun)
1 a : the fidelity of a vassal or feudal tenant to his lord b : the obligation of such fidelity
2 : intense fidelity

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 14 is:

miasma \mye-AZ-muh or mee-AZ-muh\ (noun)
1 : a vaporous exhalation formerly believed to cause disease; also
: a heavy vaporous emanation or atmosphere
2 : an influence or atmosphere that tends to deplete or corrupt; also
: an atmosphere that obscures
: fog

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 15 is:

: of, relating to, or suggestive of the labors of Sisyphus; specifically : requiring continual and often ineffective effort

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 16 is:

benedict \BEH-nuh-dikt\ (noun)
: a newly married man who has long been a bachelor

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 17 is:

wooden \WOO-dun (WOO as in "wood")\ (adjective)
1 : made or consisting of wood
2 : lacking ease or flexibility
: awkwardly stiff

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 18 is:

cosmeticize \kahz-MEH-tuh-size\ (verb)
: to make (something unpleasant or ugly) superficially attractive

Posted by Diosmel Duda (Member # 2180) on :

What is up with the last three words of the day? I mean, benedict? Wooden? Cosmetize? I think I'm going to cosmetize you now. When are you ever going to use that word?

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 19 is:

: a place that is idyllic, unaffected by : time, or remote from reality

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 20 is:

1 : produced by humans rather than by natural forces
2 a : formed by or adapted to an artificial or conventional standard b : produced by special effort
: sham

Posted by Dat bass guy (Member # 2379) on :

My factitious reply was found to be quite erroneous in content (that’s my favorite word!!! ).

-CJ

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 21 is:

sounding board \SOWND-ing-BORD\ (noun)
1 : a structure behind or over a pulpit, rostrum, or platform to give distinctness and sonority to sound
2 : a device or agency that helps propagate opinions or utterances
3 : a person or group on whom one tries out an idea or opinion as a means of evaluating it

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 22 is:

engender \in-JEN-der or en-JEN-der\ (verb)
1 : beget, procreate
2 : to cause to exist or to develop : produce
3 : to assume form : originate

Posted by Snorri (Member # 2195) on :

This thread has engendered more trite comments than any other.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 23 is:

whelm \HWELM or WELM\ (verb)
1 : to turn (as a dish or vessel) upside down usually to cover something
: cover or engulf completely with usually disastrous effect
2 : overwhelm
3 : to pass or go over something so as to bury or submerge it

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 24 is:

tome \TOHM\ (noun)
1 : a volume forming part of a larger work
2 : book; especially : a large or scholarly book

Posted by Khavanon (Member # 929) on :

This thread is starting to turn into a tome.

Posted by JohnKeats (Member # 1261) on :

Tohmany words to remember...

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 25 is:

prestigious \preh-STIH-juss or preh-STEE-juss\ (adjective)
: having an illustrious name or reputation : esteemed in general opinion

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 26 is:

1 : of, relating to, or resembling twilight : dim
2 : active in the twilight

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 27 is:

kangaroo court \kang-guh-ROO-KORT\ (noun)
1 : a mock court in which principles of law and justice are disregarded or perverted
2 : a court characterized by irresponsible, unauthorized, or irregular status or procedures

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 28 is:

devolve \dih-VAHLV or dee-VAHLV\ (verb)
1 : to pass (as rights or responsibility) by transmission or succession
2 : to come by or as if by flowing down
3 : to degenerate through a gradual change or evolution

Posted by Al (Member # 1669) on :

Dobie, your toothsome fealty to pleonasm could never be classed as Sisyphean because, if other cosmeticized threads were allowed to whelm this factitious Brigadoon, it would engender a devolution of our prestigious Hatrack, turning it into a miasmal kangaroo court of crepuscular eloquence.

(edited for embarrassing misspilling
signed, Mrs. Malaprop.)

[This message has been edited by Al (edited August 28, 2001).]

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 29 is:

visceral \VIH-suh-rul or VISS-rul\ (adjective)
1 : felt in or as if in the viscera
2 : not intellectual : instinctive
3 : of or relating to the viscera

[This message has been edited by Dobie (edited August 29, 2001).]

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 30 is:

diminution \dih-muh-NOO-shun or dih-muh-NYOO-shun\ (noun)
: the act, process, or an instance of diminishing
: decrease

Posted by Snorri (Member # 2195) on :

I have a visceral feeling that we'll never see a diminution of this thread.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for August 31 is:

supersede \soo-per-SEED\ (verb)
1 : to cause to be set aside
2 : to take the place, room, or position of
3 : to displace in favor of another

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 1 is:

soiree \swah-RAY\ (noun)
: a party or reception held in the evening

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 2 is:

1 : to sprinkle; especially : to sprinkle with holy water
2 : to attack with evil reports or false or injurious charges

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 3 is:

1 : having high and often unpredictable standards
2 : showing a meticulous or demanding attitude

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 4 is:

sophistry \SAH-fuh-stree\ (noun)
1 : subtly deceptive reasoning or argumentation
2 : an argument apparently correct in form but actually invalid;
: especially such an argument used to deceive

Posted by Snorri (Member # 2195) on :

I was going to come up with something long and involved, using at least five of the last six WOTD's. But then I decided I've had enough of sophistry.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 5 is:

1 a : of or relating to the stars : astral
b : composed of stars
2 : of or relating to a theatrical or film star
3 a : principal, leading
b : outstanding

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Stellar

4a what the lead actor in a Cockney production of "A Streetcar Named Desire" yells out in one of the plays most climatic scenes.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 6 is:

: plain to the understanding especially because of clarity and precision of presentation

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 7 is:

lampoon \lam-POON\ (verb)
: to make the subject of a lampoon
: ridicule

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 8 is:

verbiage \VER-bee-ij\ (noun)
1 : a profusion of words usually of little or obscure content
2 : manner of expressing oneself in words : diction

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 9 is:

inexorable \ih-NEKS-ruh-bul or ih-NEK-suh-ruh-bul\ (adjective)
: not to be persuaded or moved by entreaty
: relentless

Posted by LinuxPengwin (Member # 2423) on :

There is too much verbiage in this thread.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 10 is:

peruse \puh-ROOZ\ (verb)
1 a: to examine or consider with attention and in detail
b : to look over or through in a casual or cursory manner
2 : read; especially
: to read over in an attentive or leisurely manner

[This message has been edited by Dobie (edited September 11, 2001).]

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 11 is:

totem \TOH-tum\ (noun)
1 : an object (as an animal or plant) serving as the emblem of a family or clan
: something usually carved or painted to represent such an object
2 : something that serves as an emblem or revered symbol

Posted by ClaudiaTherese (Member # 923) on :

Dobie, do you take requests? Would you consider "Pyrrhic" for September 12? I know you said that you use Merriam-Webster's online Word of the Day as your source, but I was hoping for a special exception.

(Delightful thread, by the way. And kudos to you for keeping it up. )

[This message has been edited by ClaudiaTherese (edited September 11, 2001).]

Posted by Anvair (Member # 2466) on :

America's great totem of power and prosperity was destroyed today.

-CJ

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

EXTRA, EXTRA
The Supplemental Word of the Day
for September 11 is:

: achieved at excessive cost
<a Pyrrhic victory>
: costly to the point of negating or outweighing expected benefits

Posted by ClaudiaTherese (Member # 923) on :

(Thanks! A dedication to Dobie the Great-hearted, and to the citizens of my country:

mag·nan·i·mous
Etymology: Latin magnanimus, from magnus great + animus spirit [heart]

1 : showing or suggesting a lofty and courageous spirit <the irreproachable lives and magnanimous sufferings of their followers -- Joseph Addison>

2 : showing or suggesting nobility of feeling and generosity of mind <too sincere for dissimulation, too magnanimous for resentment -- Ellen Glasgow>

Let us be magnanimous, the greatest of heart and spirit we can possibly be, lest our all victories become Pyrrhic.)

[This message has been edited by ClaudiaTherese (edited September 11, 2001).]

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 12 is:

eponymous \ih-PAH-nuh-muss or eh-PAH-nuh-muss\ (adjective)
1 : of, relating to, or being one for whom something is named or is believed to be named
2 : being or having a name that is based on or derived from the name of one associated with it

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 13 is:

sic \SIK or SEEK\ (adverb)
: intentionally so written -- used after a printed word or passage to indicate that it is intended exactly as printed or to indicate that it exactly reproduces an original

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 14 is:

yahoo \YAY-hoo or YAH-hoo\ (noun)
: a boorish, crass, or stupid person

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 15 is:

fortuitous \for-TOO-uh-tuss or for-TYOO-uh-tuss\ (adjective)
1 : occurring by chance
2 a : fortunate, lucky
b : coming or happening by a lucky chance

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 16 is:

proselytize \PRAH-suh-luh-tyze or PRAH-sluh-tyze\ (verb)
1 : to induce someone to convert to one's faith
2 : to recruit someone to join one's party, institution, or cause
3 : to recruit or convert especially to a new faith, institution, or cause

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 17 is:

1 a : falling, flowing, or rushing with steep descent
b: precipitous, steep
2 : exhibiting violent or unwise speed

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 18 is:

: incapacitated or disqualified for active duty by advanced age

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 19 is:

expatiate \ek-SPAY-shee-ayt\ (verb)
1 : to move about freely or at will : wander
2 : to speak or write at length or in detail

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 20 is:

bildungsroman \BIL-doongs-roh-mahn\ (noun)
: a novel about the moral and psychological growth of the main character

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 21 is:

: presumptuously, obtusely, and often noisily self-assertive
: obtrusive

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 22 is:

veld \VELT or FELT\ (noun)
: a grassland especially of southern Africa usually with scattered shrubs or trees

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 23 is:

1 : of a kind likely to induce sleep
2 a : inclined to or heavy with sleep : drowsy
b : sleepy

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 24 is:

arriviste \air-ih-VEEST\ (noun)
: one that is a new and uncertain arrival (as in social position or artistic endeavor)

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 25 is:

enclave \EN-klayv\ (noun)
: a distinct territorial, cultural, or social unit enclosed within or as if within foreign territory

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 26 is:

reiterate \ree-IH-tuh-rayt\ (verb)
: to state or do over again or repeatedly, sometimes with wearying effect

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

First, congratulations to John Keats for accomplishing the seemingly impossible by using all 94 words on this thread (in alphabetical order) in a reasonably coherent story.

Now onto number 95.

The Word of the Day for September 27 is:

: expressive of suffering or woe
: melancholy

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 28 is:

swivet \SWIH-vut\ (noun)
: a state of extreme agitation

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 29 is:

1 : of, relating to, or constituting a portent
2 : eliciting amazement or wonder
3 : self-consciously solemn or important : pompous

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for September 30 is:

1 : inclined to be silent or uncommunicative in speech
: reserved
2 : restrained in expression, presentation, or appearance
3 : reluctant

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 1 is:

tchotchke \CHAHCH-kuh\ (noun)
: knickknack, trinket

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 2 is:

obtuse \ahb-TOOSS or ub-TOOSS (oo as in "shoot")\ (adjective)
1 a : not pointed or sharp
b : exceeding 90 degrees but less than 180 degrees
2 : not quick or keen of understanding or feeling
3 : difficult to comprehend

Posted by Khavanon (Member # 929) on :

Sometimes these words seem obtuse...

I am impressed by your resolve, Dobie.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 3 is:

catachresis \kat-uh-KREE-suss\ (noun)
1 : use of the wrong word for the context
2 : use of a forced and especially paradoxical figure of speech

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 4 is:

testimonial \tess-tuh-MOH-nee-ul\ (noun)
1 : evidence, testimony
2 a : a statement testifying to benefits received
b : a character reference
: letter of recommendation
3 : an expression of appreciation
: tribute

Posted by JohnKeats (Member # 1261) on :

I refuse to use these words in any organized fashion. I have already won this game.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 5 is:

1 : square
2 : marked by boldness and conviction
: forthright

Posted by Severian (Member # 2465) on :

I thought foursquare was a game played often with a kickball...hmmm...

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

I'm foursquare behind you on thinking that foursquare was a kids' game played with a really bouncy rubber ball.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 6 is:

proffer \PRAH-fer\ (verb)
: to present for acceptance
: tender, offer

Posted by Snorri (Member # 2195) on :

Dobie, how long will you continue to proffer new words for our contemplation?

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

I prefer that you proffer them forever!

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 7 is:

torpor \TOR-per\ (noun)
1 : mental or spiritual sluggishness
: apathy, lethargy
2 : a state of mental and motor inactivity with partial or total insensibility

Posted by Snorri (Member # 2195) on :

torpor \TOR-per\ (noun)
: A state of physical Nirvana sought by the sect of 'Couch-Potatos'.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 8 is:

stratagem \STRAT-uh-jum or STRAT-uh-jem\ (noun)
1 a : an artifice or trick in war for deceiving and outwitting the enemy
b : a cleverly contrived trick or scheme for gaining an end
2 : skill in ruses or trickery

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

His strategem finally perfected, he left the house wearing two contrasting plaids, a pimp hat, sparkling sox and bowling shoes. "She's mine now!" he thought with evident glee.

Posted by NdRa (Member # 2295) on :

Hey, that's my strategem!
Geez, what does a girl have to do to be original with her pimping material nowadays!!!

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 9 is:

chagrin \shuh-GRIN\ (noun)
: disquietude or distress of mind caused by humiliation, disappointment, or failure

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Much to my chagrin, my finals-induced nightmare of showing up late, and naked, for the exam was a dream come true.

::50 points for using two cliched phrases in one "word of the day" post::

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 10 is:

: frothy, foamy

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 11 is:

invective \in-VEK-tive\ (noun)
1 : an abusive expression or speech
2 : insulting or abusive language : vituperation

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 12 is:

snivel \SNIH-vul\ (verb)
1 : to run at the nose : snuffle
2 : to cry or whine with snuffling
3 : to speak or act in a whining, sniffling, tearful, or weakly emotional manner

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 13 is:

paucity \PAW-suh-tee\ (noun)
1 : smallness of number
: fewness
2 : smallness of quantity
: dearth

Posted by NdRa (Member # 2295) on :

I am impressed with Dobies dedication in keeping this thread alive, regardless of the paucity of responses.

[This message has been edited by NdRa (edited October 13, 2001).]

Posted by calaban (Member # 2516) on :

The overheating of my mind triggered a spumescent substance to dribble from my ears as I sniveled invectives regarding the paucity of ideas emanating from mind in its attempt to utilize recently unused words of the day.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Owing to a paucity of customers and sales, I had to close my boutique catering to urban pooches. You guessed it, Paw City is no more.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 14 is:

destitute \DESS-tuh-toot or DESS-tuh-tyoot ("oo" as in "shoot,"
1 : lacking something needed or desirable
2 : lacking possessions and resources;
:especially, suffering extreme poverty

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

I was destitute of friends, so I built some in the lab.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 15 is:

orientate \OR-ee-un-tayt or OR-ee-en-tayt\ (verb)
1 : to point or turn toward the east
2 : to set in a definite position especially in relation to the points of the compass;
also : to ascertain the bearings of
3 : to acquaint with a situation or environment

Posted by calaban (Member # 2516) on :

The enemy gate is down.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 16 is:

tocsin \tahk-sun\ (noun)
1 : an alarm bell or the ringing of it
2 : a warning signal

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The tocsin warned us of the toxin's release.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

Bob, nice use of homophones.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 17 is:

: being, having, characterized by, or occurring in approximately 24-hour periods or cycles (as of biological activity or function)

Posted by calaban (Member # 2516) on :

Being on the graveyard shift has significantly altered my circadian.

Posted by Khavanon (Member # 929) on :

Being a lazy S.O.B. has significantly altered my circadian.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 18 is:

1 : prevalent especially to an increasing degree
2 : abundant, common
3 : copiously supplied
: abounding

Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 124) on :

This thread is apparently rife with people who think "circadian" is a noun.

[This message has been edited by TomDavidson (edited October 18, 2001).]

Posted by Khavanon (Member # 929) on :

Hehe

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 19 is:

jitney \JIT-nee\ (noun)
: a small bus that serves a regular route on a flexible schedule

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The jaunty jitney jittered past the jealous jalopy.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 20 is:

1 : producing no injury
: harmless
2 : not likely to give offense or to arouse strong feelings or hostility
: inoffensive, insipid

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 21 is:

1 a : not allowing entrance or passage
: impenetrable
b : not capable of being damaged or harmed
2 : not capable of being affected or disturbed

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 22 is:

epithet \EH-puh-thet\ (noun)
1 : a characterizing word or phrase accompanying or occurring in place of the name of a person or thing
2 : a disparaging or abusive word or phrase

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

I am impervious to your epithet.

Posted by calaban (Member # 2516) on :

I muttered an epithet when realizing the futility of my innocuous attempts to open the impervious jar.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 23 is:

1 : of, relating to, or providing for many things at once
2 : containing or including many items

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Dobie Brothers latest album is an omnibus collection of musical styles.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 24 is:

gravitate \GRAV-uh-tayt\ (verb)
1 : to move under the influence of gravitation
2 a : to move toward something b : to be drawn or attracted especially by natural inclination

Posted by calaban (Member # 2516) on :

As she remained impervious to my innoctuous attempts to woo her hand, my thoughts gravitated towards my personal mortality.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Although we think of it as the moon gravitating toward the Earth, it is just as correct to say that the Earth gravitates toward the moon.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 25 is:

Valhalla \val-HAL-uh or vahl-HAHL-uh\ (noun)
: the great hall in Norse mythology where the souls of heroes slain in battle are received

Posted by EarlNMeyer-Flask (Member # 1546) on :

If I die in battle I hope to meet Odin in the halls of Valhalla.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

To the British suffering under Viking invasions, Valhalla was the equivalent of the Taliban's promise of virgins in the afterlife to followers who kill Americans.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

I'm glad to see that Bob managed to tie the "Word of the Day" in with current events.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 26 is:

1 : showing or suggesting a lofty and courageous spirit
2 : showing or suggesting nobility of feeling and generosity of mind

Posted by Jeni (Member # 1454) on :

Dobie, just wondering: How old are you? You're very cool.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

And keeping this thread alive for so long is a truly magnanimous gesture!

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

I will be making an announcement about that in the near future.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 27 is:

nyctalopia \nik-tuh-LOH-pee-uh\ (noun)
: night blindness

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

I had to wait until daylight to see that today's word is nyctalopia.

Posted by Tresopax (Member # 1063) on :

<Bumping to move in front of annoying spam>

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for October 28 is:

: being in fact the thing named and not false, unreal, or imaginary

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The hallway was paved in veritable faux marble. A real find, well worth the 2000/month rent! Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for October 29 is: petulant \PEH-chuh-lunt\ (adjective) 1 : insolent or rude in speech or behavior 2 : characterized by temporary or capricious ill humor : peevish Posted by Noodle (Member # 1962) on : On my way from the Vikings game today, I was cut off by a petulant driver. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : My petulant behavior was the main reason for the failure of my latest business venture -- a pet rental/exchange shop. You guessed it, Pet You Lent is no more. Posted by The Ether of Space (Member # 2656) on : Many hatrackers are now being accused of petulant posts. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : First Paw City, now Pet You Lent. Maybe you should get out of the animal business. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for October 30 is: virtuoso \ver-choo-OH-so or ver-choo-OH-zoh\ (noun) 1 : one skilled in or having a taste for the fine arts 2 : one who excels in the technique of an art, especially a highly skilled musical performer 3 : a person who has great skill at some endeavor Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for October 31 is: nefarious • \nih-FAIR-ee-us\ • (adjective) : flagrantly wicked or impious : evil Posted by EarlNMeyer-Flask (Member # 1546) on : The first time I consciously heard the word nefarious was when Tuvok used it on Star Trek Voyager to describe the activities of other aliens, I think. Soon thereafter, I looked it up. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : He was a virtuoso of the nefarious! Posted by JohnKeats (Member # 1261) on : ...i already won this game.... Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 1 is: conundrum \kuh-NUN-drum\ (noun) 1 : a riddle whose answer is or involves a pun 2 a : a question or problem having only a conjectural answer 2 b : an intricate and difficult problem Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : I think that John Keats' post claiming to have already won the Word of the Day qualifies as a conundrum. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : How right you are! Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 2 is: anathematize \uh-NATH-uh-muh-tyze\ (verb) 1 : to solemnly pronounce an ecclesiastical ban or curse upon (one who is being excommunicated) 2 : to denounce as accursed Posted by Snorri (Member # 2195) on : Should John Keats be anathematized for claiming to have won? Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Before we anathematize John Keats, we need to have a torture session, um, I mean a trial to determine the extent of his guilt. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 3 is: deasil \DEE-zul\ (adverb) : clockwise Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 4 is: heterodox \HEH-tuh-ruh-dahks or HEH-truh-dahks\ (adjective) 1 : contrary to or different from an acknowledged standard, a traditional form, or an established religion : unorthodox, unconventional 2 : holding unorthodox opinions or doctrines Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : He thought he was so heterodox, but his bath water drained deasil, just like everyone else's. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 5 is: grisly • \GRIZ-lee\ • (adjective) 1 : inspiring horror or intense fear 2 : inspiring disgust or distaste Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The grisly gristle caused me to grit my teeth. You might say it provided grist for the mill. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 6 is: tare \TAIR\ (noun) 1 : a deduction from the gross weight of a substance and its container made in allowance for the weight of the container; :also, the weight of the container 2 : counterweight Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : After deducting the tare weight of Otaku's arguments, I found there was nothing left. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 7 is: maunder \MAWN-der or MAHN-der\ (verb) 1 : to wander slowly and idly 2 : to speak indistinctly or disconnectedly Posted by Irami Osei-Frimpong (Member # 2229) on : Bob, I have a special request, can you use deasil in a sentence. Posted by Snorri (Member # 2195) on : Before the 18th century, clocks were uncommon enough that most people didn't know which way they turned, nor was a common direction established until well into the 17th century. For some reason (snobbishness, perhaps?) English-speaking people decided to use "clockwise" just about as soon as a common direction for clocks was established. Most other languages use the equivalents of deasil and widdershins, which in English is only used when trying to sound mediaeval. Edit: I apologise if this post seems maundering. [This message has been edited by Snorri (edited November 07, 2001).] Posted by ClaudiaTherese (Member # 923) on : A little late, but still good: quote: “I have heard frequent use,” said the late Lord Sandwich, in a debate on the Test Laws, “of the words ‘orthodoxy’ and ‘heterodoxy;’ but I confess myself at a loss to know precisely what they mean.” “Orthodoxy, my Lord,” said Bishop Walburton, in a whisper,—“orthodoxy is my doxy; heterodoxy is another man’s doxy.” --Priestley: Memoirs, vol. i. p. 572. The man was deasil to my widdershins: faint at heart, I had to lie down. Posted by Al (Member # 1669) on : The supplement for Nov. 7 is: wysteria (noun) : wetting one's pants while laughing hysterically ---------------------------- Sorry, Dobie, heard it this morning and had to post. Won't happen again. : ) [This message has been edited by Al (edited November 07, 2001).] Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Irami, here's the sentence I put up there before. I'm not actually sure it's a correct usage of deasil. quote: He thought he was so heterodox, but his bath water drained deasil, just like everyone else's Today's submission: I strained to hear his maundering speech, after which I wished he'd spoken truly when he'd said he was at a loss for words. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 8 is: raillery \RAY-luh-ree\ (noun) 1 : good-natured ridicule : banter 2 : jest Posted by Snorri (Member # 2195) on : The Hatrack forum has a perfect mixture of serious discussion and raillery. (Edit: Misspelled 'Hatracck'...) [This message has been edited by Snorri (edited November 08, 2001).] Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : One man's raillery is another man's rivalry. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 9 is: vapid \VAP-id or VAY-pid\ (adjective) : lacking liveliness, tang, briskness, or force : flat, dull Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : His vapid stare reminded me that I'd forgotten to feed my fish. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 10 is: ingratiate \in-GRAY-shee-ayt\ (verb) : to gain favor or favorable acceptance for by deliberate effort—usually used with "with" Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : In a futile attempt to ingratiate herself with her hosts, Marva lifted the plate to her face and licked it clean! Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 11 is: jejune \jih-JUNE\ (adjective) 1 : lacking nutritive value 2 : devoid of significance or interest : dull 3 : juvenile, puerile Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : I tend toward the jejune on Hatrack. Posted by aka (Member # 139) on : I just want to say that I love this thread. Bob Scopatz and Dobie, you rule! <laughs> The one thing I miss is etymological information. Like, how on earth did they come up with the word widdershuns? I can always remember and make sense of a word better if I know where it came from. Do they tell anything about that in the place (whereever it is) that you're getting these from? Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Widdershuns -- see thread on pet names for significant others. Alternative etiology -- Old English. Compound word from "Widow" and "Shun" -- On St. Widowshun's day (3rd Sunday in Lent), the towns elderly widows were rounded up and paraded through the streets while people threw rotten fruit, vegetables, mud, and animal dung at them. Later, the practice was modified by the church into almsgiving and quilting bees. In America, the practice gave rise to the Salem witch trials and canning fruits and vegetables to preserve them. Posted by aka (Member # 139) on : Thanks, Bob! Now I understand. That makes so much more sense to me now. Posted by Irami Osei-Frimpong (Member # 2229) on : I think my biggest problem with "deasil" was that it was an adverb (it describes how something moves). But I think I've risen above it. Thanks all. [This message has been edited by Irami Osei-Frimpong (edited November 11, 2001).] Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary does give etymological information for their "Word of the Day" (although they don't give that information in their regular dictionary entries), but I don't include it out of concern for copyright restrictions. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 12 is: scarify \SKAIR-uh-fye\ (verb) 1 : to make scratches or small cuts in (as skin) : to lacerate the feelings of 2 : to break up and loosen the surface of (as a field or road) 3 : to cut or soften the wall of (a hard seed) to hasten germination Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : I'd like to scarify Hatrack to see what grows. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 13 is: cryptic \KRIP-tik\ (adjective) 1 : secret, occult 2 a : having or seeming to have a hidden or ambiguous meaning : mysterious 2 b : marked by an often perplexing brevity 3 : serving to conceal Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : To someone who is colorblind, all coloration is cryptic. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 14 is: lalapalooza \lah-luh-puh-LOO-zuh\ (noun) : something superior or unusual : an outstanding example Posted by PascalScheffers (Member # 2681) on : A lalapalooza of Monty Pythonism is, without doubt, the Fish Slapping Dance. here and here. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : September 11th was the lalapalooza of terrorist acts. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 15 is: anent \uh-NENT\ (preposition) : about, concerning Posted by Red Shirt (Member # 2702) on : I was just anent to make a comment anent this thread when--ARRRGGGGGHGGGGGHHHHH!!!!!! *Red Shirt is eaten by hideous alien creature* <blood splatters everywhere> [This message has been edited by Red Shirt (edited November 15, 2001).] Posted by JohnKeats (Member # 1261) on : But you guys... I _DID_ win this game alread. :: pouts:: I just don't want this thing to go on for eternity... Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : It won't. I'll probably die eventually and that will end it. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 16 is: beleaguer \bih-LEE-gur\ (verb) 1 : to surround with an army so as to prevent escape : besiege, beset 2 : to hem in : bottle up 3 : to subject to oppressive or grievous forces : harass Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : John Keats should not beleaguer his point anant winning this thread. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 17 is: quiddity \KWIH-duh-tee\ (noun) 1 : whatever makes something the type that it is; essence 2 a : a trifling point, quibble b : crotchet, eccentricity Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 18 is: rankle \RANK-ul\ (verb) 1 : to cause anger, irritation, or deep bitterness in 2 : to feel anger and irritation Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 19 is: etymology \eh-tuh-MAH-luh-jee\ (noun) 1 : the history of a linguistic form (as a word) shown by tracing its development and relationships 2 : a branch of linguistics dealing with etymologies Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The quiddity of asking for the etymology of words on this thread rankles. Posted by nik (Member # 2114) on : the word nik has quite an etymology because i think this was the first forum i posted on here at hatrack! haha! not that it was that long ago.. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 20 is: beholden \bih-HOAL-dun\ (adjective) : being under obligation for a favor or gift : indebted Posted by jehovoid (Member # 2014) on : I remember that word from To Kill A Mockingbird. Atticus was talking about that crazy old lady Mrs Dubois I think how she wanted to die beholden to nothing, as pure as snow on the mountain. That was a good book. Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : After we slaughtered the pig, I beholden the head while they skinned the carcass. Posted by Irami Osei-Frimpong (Member # 2229) on : Dobie, I'm having issues with the word from Nov 17. quote: The Word of the Day for November 17 is: quiddity \KWIH-duh-tee\ (noun) 1 : whatever makes something the type that it is; essence 2 a : a trifling point, quibble b : crotchet, eccentricity It would seem like 1 and 2a would be antonyms. Is anybody else a little nervous about that? Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : I am beholden to Irami for pointing out that something should not be considered "essential" and "a trifle" at the same time. And, yes, I'm VERY nervous about it. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Testing post. Server is down? Posted by Dim Sum (Member # 2682) on : Hmm... ::thinking of a really good word:: Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 21 is: omphalos \AHM-fuh-lahss\ (noun) : a central point : hub, focal point Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 21 is: omphalos \AHM-fuh-lahss\ (noun) : a central point : hub, focal point Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 22 is: xylography \zye-LAH-gruh-fee\ (noun) : the art of making engravings on wood especially for printing Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : I hear Copenhagen is an omphalos of xylography. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : In xylography, one usually starts by marking the omphalos. Posted by nik (Member # 2114) on : xylography is most efective when working out from the omphalos. _____ _nik_ Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 23 is: permeable \PER-mee-uh-bul\ (adjective) : capable of being permeated : penetrable Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : By shifting the ion balance, a cell wall can become temporarily impermeable. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 24 is: untoward \un-TOH-erd or un-TORD\ (adjective) 1 : difficult to manage : stubborn, willful 2 : inconvenient, troublesome Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : I experienced untoward mental blocks in trying to come up with a sentence using today's word. Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : I almost always see this word used to modify behaviour. I always thought that it meant not just willful or stubborn behaviour, but also stubborness/willfulness that is inappropriate. That fits in with def. 1, although def. 1 doesn't shade it as negatively as I thought it was, but I don't know that I've ever seen the word used as def. 2, except perhaps in Bob's sentence above. Not to be untoward, but does anyone have any examples of def. 2? Can it be used to simply mean inconvenient or is its meaning always more negative than that? Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 25 is: welkin \WELL-kun\ (noun) 1 a : the vault of the sky : firmament 1 b : the celestial abode of God or the gods : heaven 2 : the upper atmosphere Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : On my last visit to the seashore, I tossed a welk into the welkin. As he disappeared from view I heard a booming voice say "Welcome home, Lawrence." [This message has been edited by Bob_Scopatz (edited November 25, 2001).] Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 26 is: officious \uh-FIH-shuss\ (adjective) 1 : volunteering one's services where they are neither asked nor needed : meddlesome 2 : informal, unofficial Posted by Video Game Addict (Member # 2713) on : That officious man acted like a police officer. . HEY! Get back here with my driver's license! Arrrrgh.. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Some said she was officious, but Joan of Arc really got the job done! Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 27 is: kapellmeister \kuh-PEL-mye-ster or kah-PEL-mye-ster\ (noun, often capitalized) : the director of a choir or orchestra Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Dobie is sort of the kapellmeister of this thread. Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : The kapellmeister busted my tone-deaf butt with officious efficiency. Didn't he know that this was a volunteer gig? When there's only 3 guys in the entire church choir, I say you take a fourth even if his range consists of the ability to hit three notes on the lower end of bass-baritone. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 28 is: forswear \for-SWAIR\ (verb) 1 : to make a liar of oneself under or as if under oath 2 a : to reject or renounce under oath 2b : to renounce earnestly 3 : to deny under oath Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : I hereby forswear the use of the word "forswear." Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 29 is: steadfast \STED-fast\ (adjective) 1 a : firmly fixed in place : immovable 1 b : not subject to change 2 : firm in belief, determination, or adherence : loyal Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : I remain steadfast in my refusal to use the word "forswear." Ooops. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for November 30 is: nomenclator \NOH-mun-klay-tur\ (noun) 1 : a book containing collections or lists of words 2 : one who gives names to or invents names for things Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : This thread is kind of a virtual nomenclator. [This message has been edited by Bob_Scopatz (edited November 30, 2001).] Posted by Irami Osei-Frimpong (Member # 2229) on : Foucault often accused the nomenclators for abusing their powers. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 1 is: alembic \uh-LEM-bik\ (noun) 1 : an apparatus used in distillation 2 : something that refines or transmutes as if by distillation Posted by Irami Osei-Frimpong (Member # 2229) on : After looking through Bob's magazine collection, I need an alembic to help distill my thoughts. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : alembic \uh-LEM-bik\ (noun) 1 : an apparatus used in distillation 2 : something that refines or transmutes as if by distillation Grandad made his own liquers for "medicinal purposes" and like to refer to his still as "my pharmaceutical alembic." Usually he'd take a dose and spend the evening writing poetry. Grandma said it was all written in the alembic pentameter. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 2 is: hark back \HARK-BAK\ (verb) 1 : to turn back to an earlier topic or circumstance 2 : to go back to something as an origin or source Posted by waltdisneysfrozenhead (Member # 2717) on : "Grandma said it was all written in the alembic pentameter. " *Bows before the master* Posted by Nylph (Member # 2690) on : words hurt my brain make the horror stop the pounding pain within my head shows to me my brain is dead as I write this poem of pap it occurs to me this poem is ... *pain* Posted by waltdisneysfrozenhead (Member # 2717) on : You seem to be bothered by something, Nylph. If there's something you'd like to talk about, you can tell us on Hatrack and we'll try to help. But, do it in a post devoted to what you want to talk about, please, and not in a post devoted to the word of the day. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : I would like to hark back to the original purpose of this thread as well! Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 3 is: hare \HAIR\ (verb) : to go swiftly : to move or act with extreme haste Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : I must hare off to bed. It's late. Posted by Irami Osei-Frimpong (Member # 2229) on : I think The Rabbit's hair is brown, but I may be in err because she hared so quickly, I couldn't tell the color of that hare's hair. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 4 is: eventuate \ih-VEN-chuh-wayt\ (verb) : to come out finally : result Posted by katharina (Member # 827) on : The great cardoggies of yesterday eventuate into the hignorpas of today. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : "His love will eventuate," Suzie's mother used to tell her daughter. "In the meantime, we've got his car, his house, and half his money, so quit complaining!" Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : If I effectuate thisaway, will it eventuate thataway? Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 5 is: melee \MAY-lay or may-LAY\ (noun) : a confused struggle : especially, a hand-to-hand fight among several people Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : In the midst of the melee, Bob suddenly realized he forgot to unlock the doggie door so Scruffy could take care of business outside. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 6 is: compurgator \KAHM-per-gay-ter\ (noun) : one that vouches under oath for the character or conduct of an accused person Posted by Irami Osei-Frimpong (Member # 2229) on : My worst nightmare is that I am in a Texas prison- on trial for murder without a compurgator. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Unfortunately, my compurgator turned out to be a cross between Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton. Hmm... and I always thought a compurgator was the latest computerized alligator toy from Sony. It's not a big seller because it responds to every command by eating your poodle. Posted by Perelandra (Member # 3632) on : The defense lawyer strode confidently up to the witness stand. He swept his gaze over the jury and let it rest upon the shackled witness. "You now stand as the defendant's compugator. Is that correct?" he said in a smooth tone. "Yessir." the witness grunted. "Would you please explain your relationship to the defendant." "He's mah bitch." "When did you first meet Mr. Norton?" the lawyer queried. "Last night in shower J2." Suddenly, from the prosecutions desk came a loud "OBJECTION!" After a minute-long pause the judge, in a harsh tone, said "Please be kind enough to explain the objection prosecutor Burns." "Well sir, this man cannot be used as a compugator. He has hardly known the defendant 24 hours!" The judge smirked "I agree. This man is completely useless as a compugator. Please remove him from the courtroom baliff." Exasperatedly the defense leapt to the judge's seat. "Please, your honor, my client has no other person who can act as a compugator. He has been in hiding for over 10 years! All his friend's and family have passed-" "I've heard enough of this." The judge snapped "I find this man to be of no use, legally, as a compugator. Please remove him from the court baliff." The would-be compugator stalked out of the chambers mumbling "He's mah bitch, yessir he is!" Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 7 is: sylvan \SIL-vun\ (adjective) 1 a : living or located in the woods or forest 1 b : of, relating to, or characteristic of the woods or forest 2 a : made, shaped, or formed of woods or trees 2 b : abounding in woods, groves, or trees : wooded Posted by Yank (Member # 2514) on : quote: Hmm... and I always thought a compurgator was the latest computerized alligator toy from Sony. It's not a big seller because it responds to every command by eating your poodle I should think that such a toy would be popular everywhere but Beverly Hills. Posted by Irami Osei-Frimpong (Member # 2229) on : The sylvan piggies enjoyed a unique relationship with the forrest. Posted by Yank (Member # 2514) on : Hee hee... vivisection.... Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Upon entering the sylvan glade, Bob thought that the scent would make a wonderful air freshener. So, he had the whole place leveled and shipped off to the factory for rendering. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 8 is: nocuous \NAH-kyuh-wus\ (adjective) : harmful Posted by Daedalus (Member # 1698) on : How long do you people plan on continuing this thread? It's probably not nocuous to your mental health, but EIGHT pages? Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The Bates Motel could be termed the Inn Nocuous! Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 9 is: bona fides \boh-nuh-FYE-deez\ (noun) 1 : good faith : sincerity 2 : evidence of one's good faith or genuineness -- often plural in construction 3 : evidence of one's qualifications or achievements -- often plural in construction Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : My bona fides are all over these pages! Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 10 is: menorah \muh-NOR-uh\ (noun) : a candelabrum with seven or nine candles that is used in Jewish worship Posted by jebus202 (Member # 2524) on : Im gonna roast Bob over a menorah. Posted by Perelandra (Member # 3632) on : David Lee Roth, lights the menorah... Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : In the grand scheme of things, celebrating the fact that one night's worth of oil lasted MANY MANY days is a better reason to own a menorah than just that it looks cool on your mantel and goes with your decor. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 11 is: deflagrate \DEF-luh-grayt\ (verb) intransitive sense : to burn rapidly with intense heat and sparks being given off transitive sense : to cause to burn in such a manner Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The conflagration deflagrated the flag which, coincidentally, was placed on a grate. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 12 is: fountainhead \FOWN-tun-hed\ (noun) 1 : a spring that is the source of a stream 2 : principal source : origin Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Which is the fountainhead of Hatrack, Orson Scott Card or the Internet? Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 13 is: nexus \NEK-sus\ (noun) 1 : connection, link :also, a causal link 2 : a connected group or series 3 : center, focus Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Hatrack is the nexus between fantasy and, well, just plain goofing off. Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : My lexus is the nexus between death and some place deep in my solar plexus. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 14 is: majuscule \MAJ-us-kyool or muh-JUSS-kyool\ (noun) : a large letter (as a capital) Posted by Snorri (Member # 2195) on : mY 'caps lock' KEY IS STUCK. tHAT'S WHY i SWAP majuscles AND MINUSCLES... sNORRI Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The chapter started with a majuscule and went downhill from there. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 15 is: gibe \JYBE\ (verb) 1 : to utter taunting words 2 : to deride or tease with taunting words [This message has been edited by Dobie (edited December 15, 2001).] Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : After Bill's gibe about the jib, he was quite embarrassed to find it was he who had run the boat aground! Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Supplemental Word of the Day for December 15 is: jibe \JYBE\ (verb) 1 : to be in accord with; agree 2 : variant of gibe Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : In some instances, "gibe" and "jibe" jibe, but in others, they do not. [This message has been edited by Bob_Scopatz (edited December 15, 2001).] Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : And in those cases they generally don't jive either. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 16 is: gild the lily \GILD-thuh-LIH-lee\ (verb phrase) : to add unnecessary ornamentation to something beautiful in its own right Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Zalmoxis' comment about "jive" was gilding the lily of my word-of-the-day submission. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 17 is: conglobate \kahn-GLOH-bayt or kun-GLOH-bayt\ (verb) : to form into a round compact mass Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : My yoga teacher's attempts to conglobate me resulted in a lengthly hospital stay, which, ironically, gave me the time I needed to meditate. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 18 is: yokel \YOH-kul\ (noun) : a naive or gullible inhabitant of a rural area or small town Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The best way to spot a yokel is to ask him or her to yodel. Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : The name is Yokel. Rube Yokel. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : quote: "Dobiesque" still isn't a word?! quote: Hi Dobie, I always take these as a challenge. One of things I've learned by doing this job is that *everything* is a word! And the more something is actually used the more likely it is to be included in a dictionary. I just learned that "Dobie" is a variation of dobe, a variation of adobe. It's been used since the mid-1800s. So your house may well be Dobiesque. (Though you may well be naming yourself after the TV character.) FWIW, we do take a lot of -esque, -like words when we're compiling things for OED's database. It's a way of monitoring how prevalent a word is in our vocabulary. Spocklike would certainly communicate to a large group of people. Bo We need to start using this word more. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 19 is: gnomic \NOH-mik\ (adjective) 1 : characterized by aphorism 2 : given to the composition of aphoristic writing Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Gnomic writing is always aphoristic. Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : Wang-mu lapsed into epigrams even though as a gnomic philospher she was 'supposed' to spit out aphorisms such as: Bob and dobie are a two headed dog barking in unison. But what happens when the dog decides to chase its own tail? [Guess who just started reading _Children of the Mind_?] Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 20 is: flippant \FLIH-punt\ (adjective) : lacking proper respect or seriousness Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Zalmoxis is far too flippant towards Dobie, IMHO. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 21 is: solstice \SAHL-stiss or SOHL-stiss\ (noun) : the time of year when the sun is farthest north of the equator or farthest south of the equator Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : We knew it was the solstice, but we didn't know which one. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 22 is: syncretic \sin-KREH-tik or sing-KREH-tik\ (adjective) : characterized or brought about by the combination of different forms of belief or practice Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : I propose a syncretic faith as the only way to avoid bloodshed. Mainly, everyone will be so absorbed in figuring out what the silly mish-mosh means that they'll have very little time left over for large-scale conflicts. Posted by JaneX (Member # 2026) on : The Word of the Day for December 23 is: argent \AR-jent\ (noun) 1 : the metal silver, also: whiteness 2 : the heraldic color silver or white (Thank you, Stephen R. Donaldson. ) ~Jane~ Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The usurper's pennant was argent, as was her word for the day, which was submitted too early to be for the date specified! Dobie??? You're under attack! Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : Anything that increases the number of posts on this thread is fine by me! Posted by JaneX (Member # 2026) on : Okay, I cheated a little...but there was only half an hour left, and I just had to post this cool word before someone beat me to it... What happens to me now? ~Jane~ Posted by ClaudiaTherese (Member # 923) on : A paddling for your argent-white unmentionable. Posted by JaneX (Member # 2026) on : Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : quote: ...I just had to post this cool word before someone beat me to it... Am I missing something? I mean "argent" is a perfectly fine word but is there any reason to assume that anyone else was rushing to post it here? Posted by JaneX (Member # 2026) on : Nooo...I meant before someone else posted a word of the day...I guess I didn't phrase that very well. ~Jane~ Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : I see that you were too urgent with your argent! Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 23 is: ineluctable \ih-nih-LUK-tuh-bul\ (adjective) : not to be avoided, changed, or resisted : inevitable Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The waning of argent society is ineluctable. Posted by JaneX (Member # 2026) on : *sigh* Bob, you are incorrigible. ~Jane~ Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 24 is: crèche \KRESH or KRAYSH\ (noun) : a representation of the Nativity scene Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : I hope I didn't offend anyone from the ACLU by posting that last word. Posted by U. S. Supreme Court (Member # 2186) on : WE hereby rule that if the ACLU is offended, they can write a legal brief outlining their objections and then shove it straight up their argent-white unmentionable. Posted by fugu13 (Member # 2859) on : Wow, the US Supreme Court is a member here! I think the ACLU would actually be on your side Dobie if someone (particularly govt) tried to restrict your free speech to talk about creche scenes. While not a member (yet) i pay close attention to it and other groups' activities ( I also watch the Christian Coalition and a number of others). The ACLU, while sometimes rather controversial, is at its root an organization against government stepping where it should not go. Sometimes this includes things that we would consider acceptable, like govt snowplows helping out local businesses (without approval of any govt agency), but any impingement of free speech also gets them riled up. This means any, including the KKKs free speech. The ACLU amy be controversial, but they do not choose their battles by the ideology of the combatants Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Isn't it ironic that fugu's ID should turn from "new member" to "member" in the post where he talks about not being a member yet? One might call it his creche thread! Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : Immaculate Conception (noun) 1 : the conception of the Virgin Mary in which as decreed in Roman Catholic dogma her soul was preserved free from original sin by divine grace 2 : December 8 observed as a Roman Catholic feast in commemoration of the Immaculate Conception Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : man·ger /'mAn-j&r/ (noun) : a trough or open box in a stable designed to hold feed or fodder for livestock Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 25 is: invigilate \in-VIH-juh-layt\ (verb) intransitive sense 1: to keep watch 2: to supervise students at an examination (especially British) transitive sense : supervise, monitor Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : I came here to invigilate Caesar, not to praise him! Dobie, we're watching you! Merry Christmas! Posted by ClaudiaTherese (Member # 923) on : During the time of Cleopatra, giving flowers to women as a token of affection had not become customary, yet. Instead, men used to make gifts of food to the objects of their love and desire. This was, on the whole, much more sensible. One particularly poor laborer was amazed one day to find a berry that was more round, more colorful, and in every way more perfect than any berry he had ever seen. He plucked it, and took it home to his wife. The wife was so amazed at the perfection of this berry that she chose not to eat it, and instead took it around and showed it to her friends. Word spread, and soon people were coming from all over the land to see this magnificent fruit. The poor laborer and his wife soon became rather wealthy by charging people admission to view the berry. Such was its beauty that lines formed outside of the laborer's house day and night with people waiting to pay for the privilege of viewing an example of nature's perfection. It was not very long before word of this reached the Queen, herself. Being a jealous woman, she did not consider it proper that she, the Queen, should be deprived of this perfect berry, and she sent a squadron of soldiers to retrieve it and bring it to her. It was very late at night when the soldiers arrived at the laborer's house. They pounded on the door. "Go away, we're closed for the day", shouted the laborer from his bed. "We have come for the berry", the centurion called back. "Come back tomorrow, there's no more viewing of the berry tonight", shouted the laborer, beginning to lose his patience. "You don't understand", called the centurion... "We come to seize your berry, not to praise it." (with thanks to Stan Kegel for this version ) Posted by fugu13 (Member # 2859) on : Woohoo! I'm a member now! (Though not yet of the ACLU), and CT, that is one bad joke. I love it. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : I was watching the Honeymooners episode where Norton gives Ralph a pair of spats for Christmas, and I thought it would be interesting to find out what spats are. spat (noun) : a cloth or leather gaiter covering the instep and ankle By the way, "spat" is short for "spatterdash legging". Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : I was posting the definition of the word "spat", which includes the word "gaiter", and I thought it would be interesting to find out what a gaiter is. gai·ter /'gA-t&r/ (noun) 1 : a cloth or leather leg covering reaching from the instep to above the ankle or to mid-calf or knee 2 a : an overshoe with fabric upper 2 b : an ankle-high shoe with elastic gores in the sides Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 26 is: tantamount \TAN-tuh-mownt\ (adjective) : equivalent in value, significance, or effect Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The catamount is tantamount to a cougar or a lynx. Posted by fugu13 (Member # 2859) on : Its funny, spat is one word I have known since very little. I read Uncle Scrooge comics all the time (the good, carl barks and crew originals, not the newer stuff that just rehashes old ideas badly), and he wears spats. The wonders of reading comics Posted by JaneX (Member # 2026) on : That's what "creche" means? So what's with the name "Foul's Creche"? Is that the same word, or just another one of SRD's obscure words? Or is it just a random name? (Anyone who's read Thomas Covenant will know what I'm talking about. ) ~Jane~ Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 27 is: hackle \HAK-ul\ (noun) 1 : one of the long feathers on the neck or back of a bird 2 plural : hairs (as on a dog's neck) that can be erected 3 plural : temper, dander Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Nothing raises my hackles like being in shackles. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 28 is: undertaker \un-der-TAY-ker or (particularly in sense 2) UN-der-tay-ker \ (noun) 1 : one that undertakes : one that takes the risk and management of business : entrepreneur 2 : one whose business is to prepare the dead for burial Posted by aspectre (Member # 2222) on : floccinaucinihilipilification: the action or habit of estimating something as worthless. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The undertaker of this death-defying feat was taken to the undertaker after he failed utterly to complete. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 29 is: forfend \for-FEND\ (verb) 1 : to ward off : prevent 2 : protect : preserve Posted by Irami Osei-Frimpong (Member # 2229) on : HP's mother's love forfends him against the dark arts. [This message has been edited by Irami Osei-Frimpong (edited December 29, 2001).] Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : Is "floccinaucinihilipilification" a real word? Posted by aspectre (Member # 2222) on : Heaven forfend that thou wouldst think that I should floccinaucinihilipilificate the sanctity of the Word of the Day to engage in mere sesquipedalianistic jest. [This message has been edited by aspectre (edited December 29, 2001).] Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : I was in England last year, looking for an address. After visiting the first, second and third ends, I was directed to the "forfend." But when I got there, it was blocked. Posted by Baldar (Member # 2861) on : "To forfend or offend, that is the question, whether it is nobler in mind......" "Alas poor Yorick, I forfended him well..." "First, we forfend all the lawyers" The possibilities are endless. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 30 is: balneology \bal-nee-AH-luh-jee\ (noun) : the science of the therapeutic use of baths Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Having someone else bathe me is the essence of balneology. "Uh, excuse me, my dear, I think you've missed a spot!" Posted by Baldar (Member # 2861) on : Bob--Do you mean like one of those steroid driven ex East German female weight lifters that work in hospitals now and pose as nurses. Or the slim petite Brazilian transvestites that work in hospitals now and pose as nurses? Or the kind like the woman in the King book Misery. A real nurse that poses as a human being? (I still hurt thinking what she does to his ankles). Which one is the balneologist. And who is the victim? Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : I found this interesting word and decided to post it, although I'm sure it doesn't apply to anyone here. crapulence (noun) : The condition of being intoxicated with alcoholic liquor : drunkenness, inebriation, inebriety, insobriety, intoxication, tipsiness Posted by Irami Osei-Frimpong (Member # 2229) on : His crapulance explains the short term memory loss. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for December 31 is: syllabub \SIH-luh-bub\ (noun) 1 : a drink made by curdling milk or cream with an acid beverage (as wine or cider) 2 : a sweetened drink or topping made of milk or cream beaten with wine or liquor and sometimes further thickened with gelatin and served as a dessert Posted by Wally Dick Leigh (Member # 2497) on : That word is pretty silly, bub! Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : I found this recipe at The Webtender. Syllabub Ingredients: 2 cups White wine 3 cups Milk 5 tblsp grated Lemon peel (rind) 2 cups Light cream 1/3 cup Lemon juice 4 Egg whites 1-1/2 cup Sugar Nutmeg Mixing instructions: Combine wine, lemon rind, and juice. Stir in 1 cup of the sugar and let stand until sugar dissolves. Combine milk and cream, add wine mixture, and beat with a rotary beater until frothy. Beat egg whites until stiff, add remaining 1/2 cup sugar, a little at a time, beating constantly until whites stand in peaks. Pour wine mixture into punch bowl, top with puffs of egg white, and sprinkle whites with nutmeg. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Syllabubs take all the fun out of crapulence. Just as Baldar takes all the fun out of balneology. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : Since today is New Year's Eve I would like to propose a toast to Jack, who came up with the idea for this thread and then apparently disappeared. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : HAPPY NEW YEAR 2002! The Word of the Day for January 1 is: neoteric \nee-uh-TARE-ik\ (adjective) : recent in origin : modern Posted by Baldar (Member # 2861) on : Baldar takes a neoteric look at ancient tomes. In Matrix could Neo be taken from this word? Or the just the general suffix root neo meaning new? Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : After partying last night, I feel neoterrific this morning. Broderick, the neurotic neoteric had a bone to pick, but just got sick, and he's so thick that the relation between one and the other didn't click! Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : A toast to Jack, who's idea this was, and who apparently never returned. He'll never know what hell he hath wrought! Thanks for a fun 2001 Dobie! Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 2 is: penchant \PEN-chunt\ (noun) : a strong and continued inclination : broadly, liking Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Dobie has a penchant for Word of the Day, I'd say. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 3 is: circuitous \ser-KYOO-uh-tuss\ (adjective) 1 : having a circular or winding course 2 : not being forthright or direct in language or action Posted by Perelandra (Member # 3632) on : The orbit of the planets around the sun is certainly NOT circuitous. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Via a typically circuitous route, the professor managed to cram 15 minutes of material into a 90 minute lecture. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 4 is: cavalcade \kav-ul-KAYD or KAV-ul-kayd\ (noun) 1 a : a procession of riders or carriages 1 b : a procession of vehicles or ships 2 : a dramatic sequence or procession : series Posted by Irami Osei-Frimpong (Member # 2229) on : I have spelled calvalcade with a "u" for the last 10 years. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 5 is: facile \FASS-ul\ (adjective) 1 a : easily accomplished, handled, or attained 1 b : superficial 2 : readily manifested and often insincere 3 : ready, fluent Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : He tried to assemble a cavalcade, but, having managed the process in his usually facile manner, ended up with three ponies, a dog, and several pigeons milling around the courtyard. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 6 is: perennial \puh-REH-nee-ul\ (adjective) 1 : present at all seasons of the year 2 : continuing to live from year to year 3 a : persistent, enduring 3 b : continuing without interruption : constant, perpetual 3 c : regularly repeated or renewed : recurrent Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : "Perennial" is one of those words that keeps cropping up over and over again. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 7 is: melange \may-LAHNZH or may-LAHNJ\ (noun) : a mixture often of incongruous elements Posted by jacare (Member # 950) on : Melange certainly seems to describe Hatrack. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : "Oh," he said, averting his eyes and feeling somewhat abashed, "I thought you said 'melange etois.' You two just go ahead without me." Posted by jacare (Member # 950) on : You mean melange isn't something you put on your toast? Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 8 is: glom \GLAHM\ (verb) 1 : take, steal 2 : seize, catch Posted by aspectre (Member # 2222) on : Dictionary compilers tend to be functionally illiterate inre nuance/connotation: eg 'glom' carries with it the feeling of gluelike stickiness/attachment. "1 : take, steal " in the sense of near kleptomania except that it is for a particular object rather than a general compulsion: 'sticky fingers' meet an overly tempting ('sticky') object. And even in this meaning, one can pay for the object at the checkout counter and still have (the feeling of having) glommed it. "2 : seize, catch" in the sense that the glommed object doesn't slide/bounce off; eg an idea that is understood&sticks, captures the imagination. quote: Why have a flat display if you're going to glom all this stuff on its back? [This message has been edited by aspectre (edited January 08, 2002).] Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : He would glom onto an idea like a pit bull with a small child's arm. Posted by Baldar (Member # 2861) on : Wasn't there a skateboard movie called "Gloming the cube" or was that about stealing dice? Posted by TheTick (Member # 2883) on : It was Gleaming the Cube. Yikes...bad memories man. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 9 is: pittance \PIH-tunss\ (noun) : a small portion, amount, or allowance : also, a meager wage or remuneration Posted by Video Game Addict (Member # 2713) on : "Dad.. this allowance is mere pittance!" "WHAT DID YOU JUST SAY?!" -VGA- Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : "Shall I survive on this pittance of your affection?" "Yes," she replied, "and be glad of it!" Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 10 is: sotto voce \sah-toh-VOH-chee\ (adverb or adjective) 1 : under the breath : in an undertone : also, in a private manner 2 : very softly -- used as a direction in music Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : He walked away, mumbling sotto voce about Love hurts so good! Posted by jebus202 (Member # 2524) on : I'm not sure but wouldn't it be sottoly/sottoley? Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : *mutters softly* dude, if you read dobie's posting it says that it can be used as either an adjective --OR-- an adverb. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 11 is: wherewithal \WHAIR-with-awl\ (noun) : means, resources : specifically, money Posted by ChaoticBlizzard (Member # 2914) on : I won't have any wherewithal to buy anything, until the 25 on my birthday. Can't wait, turning 16. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 12 is: haruspex \huh-RUSS-peks\ (noun) : a diviner in ancient Rome basing his predictions on inspection of the entrails of sacrificial animals Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : I was labeled a heretic when I mentioned to the haruspex that he might be more effective if he used throwing sticks. Posted by dspeyer (Member # 758) on : This is a test post, please ignore. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The haruspex discovered that he would never have the wherewithal to buy his way out of slavery by reading augeries for coins. So, he gathered up his entrails and openned a sausage shop instead. Posted by Perelandra (Member # 3632) on : Grrrrrrrrrrrr Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 13 is: deem \DEEM\ (verb) transitive sense : to come to think or judge : consider intransitive sense : to have an opinion : believe Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Perelandra deems it in poor taste to make jokes about sausages. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 14 is: cacophony \ka-KAH-fuh-nee\ (noun) : harsh or discordant sound : dissonance :specifically, harshness in the sound of words or phrases Posted by Perelandra (Member # 3632) on : Sam, fearful for his life, trembled in terror as the cacophony of the mob climbed higher and higher. Though he could not make out a word, he knew his life was in danger, and there was no place to run. A light fell upon one of the crowd. The man looked angry- death and hate were spoken by the sneer marring the surface of his face. The man was holding an axe handle, and his movements belied his desire to break pain into Sam's frail body. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The cacophony of children's voices having finally sent him over the edge, the ice cream man just drove around all day, refrigerator unit turned off, melted ice cream dripping from the rear doors, and a haunting tune running through his head. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 15 is: clochard \kloh-SHAR\ (noun) : tramp, vagrant Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : "...and this," said the proud collector, "is my clochard. He's a bit dirty, but I think that lends an air of authenticity, don't you?" Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 16 is: frigorific \frih-guh-RIH-fik\ (adjective) : causing cold : chilling Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : First he said that nothing was more frigorific than the thought of Martha Stewart in a tank top. And then she said that it was merely soporific. And then I said that I thought it was totally terrific and isn't it too bad that K-Mart is going bankrupt because I was looking forward to more Martha commercials. She's a blue-friggen-light special in my book. Well that pretty much brought the conversation to a halt. Until he had to bring up Foucault again. That led to the most sophmoric discussion of mega-super-stores as an expression of the new counter-panopticonic tendencies of late-fast-track capitalism that I've ever heard. And believe me, I've heard a lot of them. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : lol. I might have once promised that it'd be a cold day in hell before I did such-and-such. now, having spent 10 pages in Dobie's Word of the Day, I would now say that: Hades would be frigorific 'ere I engaged in behavior uncharacteristic of my modal personality. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 17 is: gauntlet \GAWNT-lut or GAHNT-lut\ (noun) 1 : a protective glove 2 : an open challenge (as to combat) 3 : a dress glove extending above the wrist Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : From the OED: 1658 COKAINE Trappolin III. ii, These hands, that wont to wave a dreadful sword, Instead of iron gauntlets now must wear Perfum'd gloves! Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : I throw down the gauntlet of self-deprecation and transcendant humility and only wish to add that I got the 500th post! I got the 500th post! I got the 500th post! I got the 500th post! I got the 500th post! I got the 500th post! I got the 500th post! I got the 500th post! I got the 500th post! I got the 500th post! [This message has been edited by Bob_Scopatz (edited January 17, 2002).] Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : Actually it was the 500th reply, but who's counting. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 18 is: constellate \KAHN-stuh-layt\ (verb) transitive senses 1 : to unite in a cluster 2 : to set or adorn with or as if with constellations intransitive sense : cluster Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Dobie's Word of the Day thread has a proven ability to constellate the best minds of Hatrack. Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : Bob, are you sure you didn't actually throw down the 'Perfum'd glove' of self-deprecation? Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Hmm... <sniffs fingers> Nope, no perfume there. Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : Okay. I just had to be sure. I'd hate for misrepresentation to creep into this thread. Of course, the larger question is: what exactly does transcendent humility smell like? My guess would be that it smells somewhat like Shiitaki mushrooms. Or maybe fresh cut hay. Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : Shiitake, I mean. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Shiitake mushrooms is a close approximation. Some have likened it to the smell of freshly mown hay. My favorite analogy is as follows: Burnt chocolate, mixed with locker room, ammonia, and a soucent of Preparation H (non-menthol variety). Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 19 is: mnemonic \nih-MAH-nik\(adjective) : assisting or designed to assist memory Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Mnemonic Memory Now Exists More Openly, Nearly Intact and Constant Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : I like my mnemonics to be pneumatic. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : I always get a lift out of your posts, Zal. Posted by waltdisneysfrozenhead (Member # 2717) on : Eh, they're just so much hot air. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 20 is: blithesome \BLYTHE-sum\ (adjective) : gay, merry Posted by aka (Member # 139) on : Only The Truly Forgetful Fellow Should Summon Each Number Thusly Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Aka, a truly blithesome person, has won the Roy G. Biv award for excellence in mnemonics. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 21 is: aggress \uh-GRESS\ (verb) : to commit aggression : to act aggressively Posted by Missippoj (Member # 2542) on : "It isn't even midnight of the 21st here" I say agressivley... Posted by aspectre (Member # 2222) on : Though wondering if such a process would transgress the bounds of courtesy, the ogress could not help but to aggress upon the final door after the long weary progress towards finding the egress. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : To aggress is to regress, according to the abbess. Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : Aggress I don't have a good sentence for the word of the day for Jan. 21. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 22 is: paronomasia \pair-uh-no-MAY-zhee-uh\ or \pair-ah-nuh-MAY-zhee-uh\ (noun) : a play on words : pun Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : His paranoia over paronomasia amazed us. If a pun was said in a forest, and no-one was there to hear it, would it still cause a groan? Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : The trees would moan and the earth would shudder. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 23 is: modicum \MAH-dih-kum or MOE-dih-kum\ (noun) : a small portion : a limited quantity Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Avoiding the obvious joke based on the hack writing found on X-rated story sites, I will simply say that the couple's infertility was due to a modicum of spermatozoa in the man's ejaculate. Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : Jeez, Bob! Show a modicum of decency. Obviously, the paronomasia item has got you over-excited. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 24 is: ascetic \uh-SEH-tik\ (adjective) 1 : practicing strict self-denial as a measure of personal and especially spiritual discipline 2 : austere in appearance, manner, or attitude Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : I don't mind being ascetic, it's denying other people access to my wit that I find hard to imagine. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 25 is: corybantic \kor-ee-BAN-tik or kahr-ee-BAN-tik\ (adjective) : like or in the spirit of a Corybant : especially, wild, frenzied Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : After 11 pages of posts, this thread has devolved into corybantic banter! Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : <----Wildly jangles tympani and bangs drums to drive away the spirits of madness. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 26 is: cognizable \KAHG-nuh-zuh-bul or kahg-NYE-zuh-bul\ (adjective) 1 : capable of being known 2 : capable of being judicially heard and determined Posted by FlyingCow (Member # 2150) on : George Lucas' reasons for filming any footage of N'Sync at all are not cognizable. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Man's history is bound up in the search for a cognizable God. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 27 is: zenith \ZEE-nuth or ZEH-nuth\ (noun) 1 : the point of the celestial sphere that is directly opposite the nadir and vertically above the observer 2 : the highest point reached in the heavens by a celestial body 3 : culminating point : acme Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Zenith brand used to be considered the zenith of home electronics. Lately, they are more like the Acme, as in Wiley Coyote's favorite supplier. Posted by Chuckles (Member # 2865) on : The Writers Workshops are provided so that we can help each other to bring our writing to its zenith. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 28 is: aplomb \uh-PLAHM or uh-PLUM\ (noun) : complete and confident composure or self-assurance : poise Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The carpenter used his plum-bob with aplomb. Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : I tried so hard to act so aplomb about it all that I ended up rotten and squishy on the supermarket floor. NOTE: can be used as an adj. although I'm flouting things a bit by not matching my use of the word to Dobie's posted definition. What say you wordmeister? Allowable? Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : Did you know that the words "aplomb" and "plumb bob" are related? Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : No, I didn't know that!!! Can you provide more details? And thanks for the correct spelling of plumb bob!!! Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : Think perpendicular! Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : According to Merriam-Webster's On-line Dictionary, "aplomb" was derived from the French phrase "a plomb" meaning "according to the plumet". A plumet ia a lead weight that is attached to a line and used to determine vertical alignment, or in other words a "plumb bob". Eventually the meaning of "a plomb" was extended from the literal "perpendicularity" to refer figuratively to "composure". It's a lead pipe cinch that these are all ultimately derived from "plumbum" the Latin word for "lead", so that they are also related to the word "plumbing". Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 29 is: logy \LOH-ghee\ (adjective) : marked by sluggishness and lack of vitality : groggy Posted by Xavier (Member # 405) on : logy: Xavier's permanent state. Xavier is fealing logy today. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : I was so logy today that Xavier beat me to the Word of the Day post. Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : I was so logy today....oh wait, Bob already did that one. So. Here's something interesting that just happens to fit in to today's word of the day. I am currently working on a logy logarithm for artificial intelligences. This will allow them to 'slack off.' I think it's important that we build robots who know how to slack off so that they don't burn out or fall into an existential crisis. The logy logarithm is the solution to the AI depression problem. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : By the way, I haven't been able to find any confirmation of "aplomb" as an adjective, but I'm willing to take Zalmoxis' word for it. Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : From the Oxford English Dictionary: 3. attrib. quasi-adj. Self-possessed, confident. 1865 Gayworthys II. 29 Her ordinary aplomb fashion of speech. Okay, so it's a quasi-adjective. What does that mean? How can something be a quasi- part of speech? Does it mean that you can use it that way but it's dubious usage, something to be frowned upon? Should I feel unsure and uneasy even guilty about using it? See this is what comes of using the OED. Much better to avoid it. <Zal inititiates logy logarithm> What was I saying? Oh, who..............cares. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 30 is: impromptu \im-PRAHMP-too or im-PRAHMP-tyoo\ (adjective) 1 : made, done, or formed on the spur of the moment : improvised 2 : composed or uttered without previous preparation : extemporaneous Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : She put on her tutu and danced an impromptu fandango. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for January 31 is: Rosetta stone \roh-ZEH-tuh-stohn\ (noun) 1 : a black basalt stone found in 1799 that bears an inscription in hieroglyphics, demotic characters, and Greek and is celebrated for having given the first clue to the decipherment of Egyptian hieroglyphics 2 : one that gives a clue to understanding Posted by Perelandra (Member # 3632) on : A local resident was injured today at the local shopping mall. Apparently, while shopping at the Discovery Channel store, a 300lbs. replica of the Rosetta Stone slipped and fell from it's display area. The shopper was hospitalized and will be released within the week. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : "Attorneys for the store owner admitted that the woman is likely to require cosmetic surgery to remove the lasting impressions that the incident made upon her." Anyway, here's my submission: Silverblue Sun provided us with a post that was the Rosetta Stone needed to aid in deciphering all those previous Thor posts. Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : He looked deep into her eyes. She was hot. Wore a black leather jacket. Thin cause she smoked so many Gauloise Blondes. And a mind that would not quit. A grad student in linguistics. Undergrad in comp lit AND classics from UC Santa Cruz. Could wrap her tongue and throat around any sound or syllable from Farsi to Tagalog. He leaned in a little closer. "Jenny," he whispered. "Will you be my personal Rosetta Stone?" She laughed. Well, snorted really. "How long did it take you to come up with that one?" A pause. He squirmed. It had been completely impromptu. Had popped into his head and come out of his mouth like he was expecting some zenith of a moment. "Damn," he thought. "Where's the rewind?" "No I will most emphatically not be your personal Rostta Stone," she said. "I will not be your personal anything. This relationship will not be based on ownership. You know how I feel about..." He didn't hear the rest of what she said because he was counting her tobacco-stained teeth. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 1 is: livid \LIH-vid\ (adjective) 1 : discolored by bruising : black-and-blue 2 : ashen, pallid 3 : reddish 4 : very angry : enraged Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : That livid mark upon my forehead appeared through no fault of my own. Posted by Diosmel Duda (Member # 2180) on : That livid mark on your forehead appeared because I was livid with you. Posted by Aelysium (Member # 2940) on : Being in a different time-zone sucks. I'll never get the word of the day. Aelysium Who hopes Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on : he livid as he die-ed, in a brilliant burst of flames. Posted by Perelandra (Member # 3632) on : Before the morning dew You weep on morrow's tune Everywhere and everyone Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on : That wasn't exactly the livid response I was expecting. Posted by Pseudonym (Member # 3006) on : I hit my head on the computer desk, and get a livid bump on my head. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 2 is: benefic \buh-NEH-fik\ (adjective) : of, having, or exerting a favorable or beneficent influence Posted by Darling (Member # 2970) on : Dobie seems to be particularly benefic with his words-of-the-day. And I got the first post. Yatta!! [This message has been edited by Darling (edited February 02, 2002).] Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Dobie's benefic influence spreads like wildfire through a lush grashland; like floods along the Mighty Mississippi; like an avalanche in the Alps;... Posted by Aelysium (Member # 2940) on : Lush things don't tend to catch fire very easily, y'know. Indeed, one might say that as far as fire safety is concerned, lushness is quite benefic. Aelysium Who hopes Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 3 is: conquian \KONG-kee-un\ (noun) : a card game for two played with 40 cards from which all games of rummy developed Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : At the card tournament, as the Rummy champion entered, the crowd rose and gave a rousing rendition of All Hail the Conquian Hero. [This message has been edited by Bob_Scopatz (edited February 03, 2002).] Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 4 is: eccentric \ik-SEN-trik or ek-SEN-trik\ (adjective) 1 a : not of the usual or normal kind b : acting or thinking in an unusual way 2 : deviating from a circular path : especially, elliptical Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : All who fell under her spell settled into an eccentric orbit around the rest of humanity. [This message has been edited by Bob_Scopatz (edited February 05, 2002).] Posted by katharina (Member # 827) on : I miss having eccentric friends who play Quidditch every month and have 11-inch Jedi braids on an otherwise missionary haircut. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 5 is: affluent \AF-loo-unt\ (adjective) 1 : flowing in abundance 2 : having a generously sufficient and typically increasing supply of material possessions Posted by ClaudiaTherese (Member # 923) on : Dobie is quite affluent in verbiage. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The affluent produce more effluent per capita than do the non-affluent. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 6 is: logomachy \loh-GAH-muh-kee\ (noun) 1 : a dispute over or about words 2 : a controversy marked by verbiage Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Prince (aka "the artist," "the artist formerly known as 'Prince'," and "Symbol") prompted a logomachy when he changed his name to a logo. The entire episode left most music fans feeling logy. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 7 is: prototype \PROH-tuh-type\ (noun) 1 : an original model on which something is patterned : archetype 2 : an individual that exhibits the essential features of a later type 3 : a first full-scale and usually functional form of a new type or design of a construction (as an airplane) Posted by Member (Member # 3008) on : The "Word of the Day" thread was the prototype for twelve page subjects, later surpassed by the latest Homosexuality thread. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The amoeba is the prototype protozoan. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Must Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Have Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : New Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Word-of-the-Day!!!!!!! Anyone seen Dobie??? Posted by Perelandra (Member # 3632) on : Word of the Day for Friday February 8, 2002: incontrovertible \in-kon-truh-VUR-tuh-buhl\, adjective: Too clear or certain to admit of dispute; indisputable; unquestionable. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : Sorry I'm late, and thaks Perelandra for covering for me. The Word of the Day for February 8 is: scission \SIH-zhun\ (noun) 1 : a division or split in a group or union : schism 2 : an action or process of cutting, dividing, or splitting : the state of being cut, divided, or split Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : With two words of the day, we have an incontrovertible scission in the thread. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 9 is: obnubilate \ahb-NOO-buh-layt\ (verb) : becloud, obscure Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : The nubile sirens obnubilated Ulysses's mind, but the sirens weren't able to obfuscate his crew because their ears were plugged up, and so his ship remained obdurate to their enchanting song. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The professor could so obnubilate the mind of any listener that he was often asked to assist local surgeons in cases where the patient was unable to tolerate anesthesia. After one unlucky freshman failed to wake from his lecture-induced coma, the school had no choice but to sew the prof's mouth shut. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 10 is: defile \dih-FYLE or DEE-fyle\ (verb) : to march off in a line Posted by ClaudiaTherese (Member # 923) on : The LOTR Wenches defiled themselves to view Aragorn's striptease in another thread. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : Good job! That sentence actually made use of both meanings of the word "defile". Posted by ClaudiaTherese (Member # 923) on : *low bow* I aim to please, always. Especially you, Dobie. *cheeky grin* Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Concert-goers defiled themselves on the way to the port-a-potty. Now there's an image I bet sticks with y'all for a few minutes! BTW, good one CT. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 11 is: flexuous \FLEK-shuh-wus\ (adjective) 1 : having curves, turns, or windings 2 : lithe or fluid in action or movement Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The flexuous line of people behaved more like a cohesive organism than a gathering of individuals. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : I would just like to apologize for taking the next page's first post. My connection went down and I thought it'd lost my original post, so I hit submit again. I hereby relinquish my claim to this spot in the posting order, and yield to the next person. -Bob [This message has been edited by Bob_Scopatz (edited February 11, 2002).] Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 12 is: razzmatazz \raz-muh-TAZ\ (noun) 1 : a confusing or colorful often gaudy action or display : razzle-dazzle 2 : inflated, involved, and often deliberately ambiguous language : double-talk 3 : vim, zing Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on : Some people go to Mardi Gras for the razzmatazz; others just like breasts. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : An attraction to razzmatazz is the human equivalent of monkeys' attraction to bright shiny objects. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 13 is: immutable \im-MYOO-tuh-bul\ (adjective) : not capable of or susceptible to change Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Despite numerous scrubbings, his fetor proved immutable. Posted by Max (Member # 3034) on : My mother calls me immutable. But thats because she wants to redo the house in bad colors. Our study has light pink walls and forest green carpets. yuk. Maxdout Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 14 is: scintillate \SIN-tul-ayt\ (verb) 1 : to emit sparks : spark 2 : to emit quick flashes as if throwing off sparks : sparkle 3 : to throw off as a spark or as sparkling flashes Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The nited sequins on his jacket scintillate. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 15 is: transpire \tran-SPYRE\ (verb) 1 : to pass or give off (as water vapor) through pores or a membrane 2 : to become known 3 : to take place : happen Posted by Ralphie (Member # 1565) on : You know - this thread, to me, says "dedication". Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : In order for our business to transpire, we must cease to haver. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 16 is: verbicide \VER-buh-syde\ (noun) 1 : deliberate distortion of the sense of a word (as in punning) 2 : one who distorts the sense of a word Posted by Cedrios (Member # 1744) on : Verbicide, that has to do with Bush's war on the terror of the english language, right? Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : As his brain continued to rot from untreated venereal disease, the man became a notorious verbicide. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 17 is: jeunesse doree \zher-ness-dor-AY\ (noun) : young people of wealth and fashion Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The jeunesse doree aboard the Andrea Doria escaped in a dory. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 18 is: gargantuan \gar-GANT-shuh-wun\ (adjective) : of tremendous size or volume : gigantic, colossal Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on : This initially humble thread has reached the gargantuan size of 13 pages. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Not only gargantuan, it has become a sockdolager! Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 19 is: kindred \KIN-drud\ (adjective) 1 : of a similar nature or character : like 2 : of the same ancestry Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : He could only pontificate, while she would bloviate. They were kindred spirits. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 20 is: nimiety \nih-MY-uh-tee\ (noun) : excess, redundancy Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on : Despite the useless nimiety, we spent a week reviewing simple algebra; to make up for our lost week, we spent an hour on new material. Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : The nimiety of his machinations proved to be his watergate. BTW, the phrase "useless nimiety" is a nimiety. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 21 is: demean \dih-MEEN\ (verb) : to conduct or behave (oneself) usually in a proper manner Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : demean is to conduct oneself in a proper manner? Wow! I've been demeaning myself my whole life. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : I should point at that today's word, which is derived from the Middle French "demener" meaning "to conduct" is unrelated to the "demean" which is derived from the word "mean" and which means "to lower in character, status, or reputation". Posted by Human (Member # 2985) on : I could reply to this, but to do so would be to demean myself... Human Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 22 is: intoxicate \in-TAHK-sih-kayt\ (verb) 1 : poison 2 : to excite or stupefy by alcohol or a drug especially to the point where physical and mental control is markedly diminished 3: to excite or elate to the point of enthusiasm or frenzy Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : Watching her boss was intoxicating; the throttlebottom could turn any task into a monumental failure. Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 23 is: millefleur \meel-FLER\ (adjective) : having an allover pattern of small flowers and plants Posted by Human (Member # 2985) on : My mom owns a shirt with a millefleur pattern on it. I think. Human Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on : The Word of the Day for February 24 is: non sequitur \NAHN-SEH-kwuh-ter\ (noun) 1 : an inference that does not follow from the premises 2 : a statement (as a response) that does not follow logically from anything previously said Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on : His donning of a millefleur cumberbund was almost a non-sequiter at the black tie affair. Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on : Sadly, most hard-core surrealists will never know the joy of a well-done non sequitur. That's why for only49.95 (plus shipping and handling, cod only), Zal will send you his handy guide _How to tell when it actually does have something to do with the price of tea in China_. Act now! No I mean it, act now!

<-----launches in to a scene from Lorca's _The House of Bernardo Alba_.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for February 25 is:

1 a : inclined to dispute
b : marked by disputation
2 : provoking debate
: controversial

Posted by Snorri (Member # 2195) on :

Somtimes I miss the disputatious people on hatrack

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The disputatious impresario was left without company.

Posted by Human (Member # 2985) on :

I am very disputatious.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for February 26 is:

recrudescence \ree-kroo-DEH-sunss\ (noun)
: a new outbreak after a period of abatement or inactivity
: renewal

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

To the many of you who were hoping for a recrudescence of Zalmoxis postings on the word of the day thread, all I can say is: I'm sorry and gosh darn it I'll try to do better, but I have a feeling that it's not going to happen. You see, I've begun to lose faith in the ability of words to delight.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

With a resurgence of interest in Greek Tragedy among theater goers,has come an amazing recrudescence of the buskin among the fashion elite.

Posted by WmLambert (Member # 2509) on :

On March 3 at 10 PM, MONICA LEWINSKY tells all in the "Monica in Black and White" recrudescence of the acclaimed HBO documentary series "America Undercover Sundays."

Posted by Ace of Spades (Member # 2256) on :

You know it's love when a guy puts a girl's name in bold print.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for February 27 is:

hiatus \hye-AY-tuss\ (noun)
1 : a break in or as if in a material object
: gap
2 : an interruption in time or continuity
: break

Posted by Max (Member # 3034) on :

It is my hope that a hiatus in my life will lead me to a long vacation in Australia.

Maxdout

Posted by Snorri (Member # 2195) on :

After a longish hiatus, I've started posting again.

Posted by TimeTim (Member # 2768) on :

After a long hiatus, he came up with another word, Cycludal.

It is a conjuction of Cyclops and Dudal, as in a really rockin' cyclops, or a dudacious one eyed monster. (cyclops)

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

After an off-season hiatus, the dramaturg busied his pen in hopes of repeating last season's success.

Posted by Human (Member # 2985) on :

If I take a hiatus from Hatrack, I fall behind in all the threads.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for February 28 is:

quaff \KWAHFF or KWAFF\ (verb)
intransitive sense : to drink deeply
transitive sense : to drink (a beverage) deeply

Posted by Snorri (Member # 2195) on :

The dictionary is wrong. "Quaff" means 'toss beer towards mouth - most will probably miss'.

Drunk Norwegians are great quaffers.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

One must be careful to quaff in such a manner as to not spoil one coif.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 1 is:
conventicle \kun-VEN-tih-kul\ (noun)
1 : assembly, meeting
2 : an assembly of an irregular or unlawful character
3 : an assembly for religious worship
: especially, a secret meeting for worship not sanctioned by law

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The conventicle took place in the odeum until the town sheriff burned the place to the ground.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 2 is:

colubrine \KAHL-yuh-bryne or KAH-luh-bryne\ (adjective)
1 : of, relating to, or resembling a snake
2 : of or relating to a large cosmopolitan family (Colubridae) of chiefly nonvenomous snakes

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The line waiting for Mr. Toad's Wild Ride was colubrine in nature, and at least twice the duration of any normal child's bladder control.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 3 is:
esplanade \ESS-pluh-nahd or ess-pluh-NAHD\ (noun)
: a level open stretch of paved or grassy ground
: especially, one designed for walking or driving along a shore

Posted by Human (Member # 2985) on :

My house doesn't have an esplanade...all we have are rocks, hills, and crabgrass.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

We'd want...another shrubbery! Placed neatly near this one with kind of an esplanade running between them... Nothing too expensive.

Posted by RabidMoose (Member # 3137) on :

Where there was formerly a beautiful esplanade, authorities have recently paved over the grass to install a highway

Posted by BYuCnslr (Member # 1857) on :

March 4, 2002
Tardegy tar'djee n. deliberate mangling of a tragedy' An incident in which someone who clearly deserves to be selected out of the gene pool on grounds of extreme stupidity meets with a messy end. Coined on the Darwin list, which is dedicated to chronicling such incidents; but almost all hackers would instantly recognize the intention of the term and laugh.

[This message has been edited by BYuCnslr (edited March 03, 2002).]

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 4 is:
succumb \suh-KUM\ (verb)
1 : to yield to superior strength or force or overpowering appeal or desire
2 : to be brought to an end (as death) by the effect of destructive or disruptive forces

Posted by Eryn (Member # 2190) on :

kamikazi and kowtow for March 4th. I'm not exactly sure what they mean *sry* but they sound cool.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Although I can pound the pound cake, I will never succumb to that succubus of succulence that is Sara Lee.

Did I spell succulence right? succulance?

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

And what's with the usurpers?

Posted by TheTick (Member # 2883) on :

This thread has succumbed to evil, as it had 666 posts before I posted.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

I hereby succumb to the philomath in all of us.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 5 is:
flotsam • \FLAHT-sum\ • (noun)
1 : floating wreckage of a ship or its cargo
: broadly, floating debris
2 a : a floating population (as of emigrants or castaways)
b : an accumulation of miscellaneous or unimportant stuff

Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on :

My apartement is just holding space for all the flotsam of my life.

Posted by Max (Member # 3034) on :

On the day of my birthday (today i'm 18) i realize my life is nothing but flotsam.

Maxdout

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Among the flotsam of Roma that slowly worked itself across central Europe was a winsome lass, beautiful enough to fit the picture of a stereotypical gypsy girl and smart enough to know how to play upon that stereotype.

And that's how I lost 60 DM in Prague. But that's my weakness. You winsome, I flotsam.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

His religious education was like so much flotsam on the sea of his turbulent mind.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 6 is:
irrefragable \ih-REH-fruh-guh-bul or ear-ih-FRAG-uh-bul\ (adjective) 1 : impossible to refute
2 : impossible to break or alter

Posted by Max (Member # 3034) on :

John Forbes Nash Jr.'s genius is irrefragable.

Maxdout

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

My post in the psych meds thread is irrefragable.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 7 is:
: having knowledge or experience

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

I am conversant with the use of the word irrefragable.

Posted by Max (Member # 3034) on :

Gandolf is conversant, thats why he kicks ass.

Maxdout

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 8 is:
katzenjammer • \KAT-sun-jam-er\ • (noun)
1 : hangover
2 : distress
3 : a discordant clamor

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

The early morning jack hammer threw off such a katzenjammer that by the time my alarm went off I felt like I had a serious, well, katzenjammer.

My other favorite word based on cats (Katze = cat in German) is caterwaul which has similar roots to katzenjammer.

Posted by Ace of Spades (Member # 2256) on :

"The Caterwaul Kids" just doesn't have the same ring to it.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 9 is:
1 : of, relating to, or resembling the god Apollo
2 : harmonious, measured, ordered, or balanced in character

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The artist thought his work was Appolonian, but the critics were universal in deploring its katzenjammer discordance. Needless to say, he became a huge commercial success.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 10 is:
assuage \uh-SWAYJ\ (verb)
1 : to lessen the intensity of (something that pains or distresses)
: ease
2 : pacify, quiet
3 : to put an end to by satisfying : appease, quench

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

After searching many places, the Dacian sky deity finally found a place that would assuage his thirst for modern discourse.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

I took two Immodium and a Pepcid AC just to assuage the sausage that was attacking my stomach.

Posted by Human (Member # 2985) on :

It takes a lot of flattery to assuage my bruised ego.

Posted by Max (Member # 3034) on :

Seeing Time Machine once does not assuage my urge to see Guy Pearce naked.

Damn.

Maxdout

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 11 is:

indoctrinate \in-DAHK-truh-nayt\ (verb)
1 : to instruct especially in fundamentals or rudiments
: teach
2 : to imbue with a usually partisan or sectarian opinion, point of view, or principle

Posted by Col.Graff (Member # 3175) on :

My mom, being a teacher and seeing how much time I spend on this site, complains that I was not indoctinated with the english language in order to spend all my time on this site.

Posted by odouls268 (Member # 2145) on :

my mother,a nurse, says "You do what i tell you or ill rip out your spleen."

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Once everyone has been properly indoctrinated, it will be far easier for me to follow with an occasional ukase or two.

Posted by Max (Member # 3034) on :

Obi own (no idea how to spell it) indoctrinated Luke in the ways of lesbian love making.

Maxdout

Posted by Col.Graff (Member # 3175) on :

Dobie seems to have not noticed that today is the 12th, so Ill help him out. I hope you dont mind Dobie.

--------------------------------------------

The Word of the Day for March 12 is:

deglutition • \dee-gloo-TIH-shun or deh-gloo-TIH-shun\ • (noun)
: the act or process of swallowing

[This message has been edited by Col.Graff (edited March 12, 2002).]

Posted by Max (Member # 3034) on :

The deglutition of glue is a common hobby among kindergardeners.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

It's fine with me.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

The previous post led to such a quick, hard deglutition on my part that I started coughing uncontrollably.

Usurpers are one thing, but for Dobie to capitulate? Now I'm left wondering what the *real* word of the day is.

Posted by Col.Graff (Member # 3175) on :

I had gone through deglutition with a piece of paper with the real word of the day on it.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

In honor of page 15 we have two special supplemental words for today.

The first Supplemental Word of the Day for March 12 is

bob /'bäb/ (verb)

transitive senses
1 : to strike with a quick light blow
: rap
2 : to move up and down in a short quick movement
3 : to polish with a bob
: buff
intransitive senses
1 a : to move up and down briefly or repeatedly
1 b : to emerge, arise, or appear suddenly or unexpectedly
2 : to nod or curtsy briefly
3 : to try to seize a suspended or floating object with the teeth

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The second Supplemental Word of the Day for March 12 is

having the surface closely covered with hairs, like a brush.

I had to go to dictionary.com for this one.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 13 is:

impetuous \im-PECH-wuss or im-PEH-chuh-wuss\ (adjective)
1 : marked by impulsive vehemence or passion
2 : marked by force and violence of movement or action

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The scopate body bobbed gently in the impetuous surf.

Dobie rules.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

My previous post was much to impetuous. The master has returned.

Posted by Col.Graff (Member # 3175) on :

Thought my posting of the word of the day may have seemed impetuous, I ment no harm by it.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 14 is:

1 : playing lightly on or over a surface
: flickering
2 : softly bright or radiant
3 : marked by lightness or brilliance especially of expression

Posted by Ron Lambert (Member # 2872) on :

Lambent + Earth = Lambert. That's my name! Bright land!

Ron Lambert

Posted by Jeni (Member # 1454) on :

Sorry Ron, but I don't think that counts as a sentence. Try again.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

It was a lambent sentence, touching only lightly on the rules of English grammar.

Posted by Human (Member # 2985) on :

The lambent sunlight gently lit the waves as they rolled into the shore.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

quote:

That's my name!

It has a subject and a predicate, so it is a sentence.

Posted by Ron Lambert (Member # 2872) on :

To quote Winston Churchill: "This is the kind of academic pedantry up with which I must put."

Ron Lambert

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 15 is:

shenanigan \shuh-NAN-ih-gun\ (noun)
1 : a devious trick used especially for an underhand purpose
2 a : tricky or questionable practices or conduct
2 b : high-spirited or mischievous activity

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Some viewed his behavior as youthful shenanigans, while others were of the opinion that they rose to the level of criminal acts.

Posted by Ron Lambert (Member # 2872) on :

The U.S. Justice Department charged Arthur Andersen with obstruction of justice Thursday for his shenanigans involving the shredding of tons of Enron Corp. documents.

"But I told my secretary over my cell phone to 'Ship the Enron documents to the Feds.' The words she thought she heard were 'Rip the Enron documents to shreds.' You see–it was all a case of bad cellular!" (Adapted from a recent humorous takeoff on Sprint Cellular ads.)

Ron Lambert

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 16 is:

1 : affected with spavin
2 : old and decrepit
: over-the-hill

Posted by Ron Lambert (Member # 2872) on :

Hmm, why do I detect a subtle dig, here...?

I am not spavined!

Ron Lambert

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 17 is:

cohort \KOH-hort\ (noun)
1 : a group of warriors or followers
2 : companion, colleague

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The spavined cohort rode over the wide prarie, the fumes from their RVs spawning dust devils in their wake.

[This message has been edited by Bob_Scopatz (edited March 18, 2002).]

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 18 is:

: bursting forth

Posted by Chaziel (Member # 3173) on :

There was a great erumpent of laughter when our teacher walked in this morning. (She was wearing her slippers.)

Posted by esl (Member # 3143) on :

The joyous high school senior emitted erumpent exclamations and whoops of joy the first time she was accepted into a university.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The trumpet was erumpent.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 19 is:

detoxify \dee-TAHK-suh-fye\ (verb)
1 : to remove a poison or toxin or the effect of such from
2 : to free (as a drug user) from an intoxicating or addictive substance or from dependence on it
3 : neutralize

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Many have tried to detoxify the various Christianity and homosexuality threads on Hatrack. Many have failed.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 20 is:

1 : not capable of sinning or liable to sin
2 : free from fault or blame : flawless

Posted by Ron Lambert (Member # 2872) on :

The rooster broke his beak on a rock, and now he's impeccable....

Ron Lambert

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

That pun was impeccable.

Posted by Jeni (Member # 1454) on :

Will Dobie be attending Endercon?

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 21 is:

1 : of or relating to a church parish
2 : of or relating to a parish as a unit of local government
3 : confined or restricted as if within the borders of a parish
: limited in range or scope (as to a narrow area or region)
: provincial, narrow

Posted by Col.Graff (Member # 3175) on :

During elementary school I was not allowed to leave the parochial grounds.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

His parochial wit displayed his catholic thought patterns.

Posted by Col.Graff (Member # 3175) on :

It had nothing to do with catholic thought patterns, I was enrolled in a parochial prision camp.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 22 is:

wisenheimer \WYE-zun-hye-mer\ (noun)
: smart aleck

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Col. Graff is a wisenheimer.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 23 is:

stygian \STIH-jee-un or STIH-jun\ (adjective, often capitalized)
1 : of or relating to the river Styx
2 : extremely dark, gloomy, or forbidding

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

All was darkness and foreboding, until I heard that Stygian refrain:

"Lady, when you're with me I'm smiling..."

Posted by Ron Lambert (Member # 2872) on :

....Accompanied by the skirl of bag pipes, floating eerily over the night-blackened, fetid moors, where lay the bloated bodies of warriors, defeated when last the sun shone. Thus sounded the stygian lovesong, as a final triumph over the slayers of Braveheart.

Ron Lambert

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 24 is:

domicile \DAH-muh-syle or DOH-muh-syle\ (noun)
: a dwelling place : place of residence
: home

Posted by Whomping WilIow (Member # 3224) on :

My domecile is extremely stygian, not at all impeccable.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The dromedary's domicile smelled of wet fur and dung.

Posted by Human (Member # 2985) on :

My domicile looks like a tornado ran through it.

Posted by Wolverine (Member # 3102) on :

The other day, while surfing the inter-net from my computer in my domicile, I was accosted by an annoying spam regarding Entropia.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 25 is:

1 a : serving as a pattern
1 b : deserving imitation
: commendable
: also, deserving imitation because of excellence
2 : serving as a warning
: monitory
3 : serving as an example, instance, or illustration

Posted by Wolverine (Member # 3102) on :

Sidney Poitier was awarded an Oscar last night for his exlemplary accomplishments throughout his career as an actor and film-maker.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 26 is:

1 a : not easily pulled apart
: cohesive
1 b : tending to adhere or cling especially to another substance
2 a : persistent in maintaining or adhering to something valued or habitual
2 b : retentive

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The star fish was tenacious in it's hold on the scuba diver's face mask.

Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on :

Bob_Scopatz is tenacious in his desire to contribute to the word of the day.

Posted by Doug J (Member # 1323) on :

Doug's tenacious arguments have defeated may a foe.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Celia and Doug showed exemplary use of the word tenacious.

and they helped me start the 16th page.

[This message has been edited by Bob_Scopatz (edited March 26, 2002).]

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 27 is:

1 : having infinite awareness, understanding, and insight
2 : possessed of universal or complete knowledge

Posted by jacare (Member # 950) on :

Even if I was omniscient, I wouldn't know it.

Posted by trebz (Member # 2700) on :

word of the day

scurrilous: to be obscenely insolent

Posted by tabbs (Member # 3235) on :

I was going to put a sticker on my window, in the sense that people put up "Monte Carlo" and such...but it was going to say "Insolent Beast" in refference to the way my car acts...

Scurrilous Beast... I'm not so sure it has that nice ring...

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Even the non-omniscient (semiscient?) would realize how scurrilous it is to attempt a hijacking of the word of the day thread. Some rules were meant to be broken. Some were meant to be followed like Spring follows Winter. -5 to trebz for violation of the natural order of things.

Posted by trebz (Member # 2700) on :

I didn't hijack anything! +200 to trebz for putting up with the scurrilous behaviour of Bob...

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 28 is:

containerize \kun-TAY-nuh-ryze\ (verb)
1 : to ship by containerization
2 : to pack in containers

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

<----wails off-key:

I simply can't containerize my feelings for you, my love. I'd have to cauterize my aorta and gouge out my eyes, love.

You may say I'm obstinate and tenacious
Well, it's better than abstinent and capricious.

Oh, I can't conyainerize my feelings for you-oo-oo-oo-oo!

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

I plan to spend Easter Sunday helping a friend containerize the most recent 30 years of his life.

Posted by Doug J (Member # 1323) on :

Some people containerize thier BS on this forum. But not me, never me....

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 29 is:

Casbah \KAZ-bah or KAHZ-bah\ (noun)
1 : a North African castle or fortress
2 : the native section of a North African city

Posted by Doug J (Member # 1323) on :

...The shareef don't like it
Rockin' the Casbah
Rock the Casbah....

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Having teleported into the middle of the Casbah, her first impulse was, unfortunately, to disguise herself as a rare species of Rhino.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 30 is:

incognito \in-kahg-NEE-toh or in-KAHG-nuh-toh\ (adverb or adjective)
: with one's identity concealed

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Dobie is one of the most successfully icognito personalities on Hatrack.

Posted by Unseen (Member # 3227) on :

Whereas Bob's misspelling of incognito is as apparent as his identity.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for March 31 is:

hyperbole \hye-PER-buh-lee\ (noun)
: extravagant exaggeration

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

I'm getting tired of doing this whole "Word of the Day" thing, so I'm ending this right now. Fron now on there will be no more new words, and I will be deleting this whole thread soon, probably in the next day or two

Posted by Ron Lambert (Member # 2872) on :

I hope that's just hyperbole. If you're getting tired of it, just let someone else hijack the thread.

Ron Lambert

Posted by esl (Member # 3143) on :

but Dobie, i like it.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Would it be hyperbole to say that I have enjoyed the Word of the Day thread more consistently than any other thread on Hatrack?

Dobie, thanks for a good run. If someone wants to take it over, or start a new thread, I think that'd be fine.

In the meantime, I'd just like to thank Dobie for his dedication.

Always leave 'em wanting more!

Posted by Doug J (Member # 1323) on :

Of course, this could be dobie's april fool's joke.

Posted by Col.Graff (Member # 3175) on :

Dobies idea to end the thread could be a hyperbole solution to other people attempting to steal his thread.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

Of course anyone still interested in a "Word of the Day" can click here.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Dobie wins the April Fools contest on Hatrack.

Posted by Ralphie (Member # 1565) on :

Whether or not ending this thread is Dobie's "April Fool", I, for one, am almost psychotically inspired by his mind-bending dedication to this thread.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for April 1 is:
Rube Goldberg \ROOB-GOHLD-berg\ (adjective)
: accomplishing by complex means what seemingly could be done simply
:characterized by such complex means

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The programmer's code was such a Rube Goldberg that it took the company 500 person hours to figure out that all it did was turn off the lights in the men's bathroom at random intervals. Many a suit was happy to see the program deleted.

Posted by Doug J (Member # 1323) on :

Damn it! There's Bob gettin' all Rube Goldberg on me again! Can ya tone it down for us mis-educated foke?

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for April 2 is:
facsimile \fak-SIH-muh-lee\ (noun)
1 : an exact copy
2 : a system of transmitting and reproducing graphic matter (as printing or still pictures) by means of signals sent over telephone lines

Posted by Aelysium (Member # 2940) on :

That post is a facsimile of what Dobie typed on his computer.

Ae

Posted by Kayla (Member # 2403) on :

We should probably have a facsimile of this thread in case, like the 1,000 post thread, it disappears.

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for April 3 is:
: too evident to be doubted
: unquestionable

Posted by Kayla (Member # 2403) on :

We should indubitabilitly have a facsimile of this thread in case, like the 1,000 post thread, it disappears.

Posted by hilma (Member # 3077) on :

It is indubitabilitly the 4th of April - what is the word?

Posted by Dobie (Member # 1130) on :

The Word of the Day for April 4 is:
garble \GAR-buhl\ (verb)
: to distort the meaning or sound of

Posted by Jeni (Member # 1454) on :

Is it really true?

Posted by Human (Member # 2985) on :

You know, if this thread gets much bigger, the glitch is going to garble it.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

It has always struck me as odd that stutterers practice with marbles in their mouth to produce speech which is less garbled.

Posted by Jeni (Member # 1454) on :

Bob's a day late and a dollar short on the word of the day

Posted by LadyDove (Member # 3000) on :

Bob, Pat, somebody - Maybe we should keep this alive in the spirit of the mischievous D. ?

Posted by Jeni (Member # 1454) on :

The Word of the Day for April 5 is:

magnum opus • \MAG-num-OH-pus\ • (noun)
: a great work; especially : the greatest achievement of an artist or writer

Posted by LadyDove (Member # 3000) on :

Jeni helped Dobie continue his magnum opus.

Posted by Jeni (Member # 1454) on :

The Word of the Day for April 6 is:

septentrional • \sep-TEN-tree-uh-nul\ • (adjective)
: northern

Posted by Jeni (Member # 1454) on :

The Word of the Day for April 6 is:

septentrional • \sep-TEN-tree-uh-nul\ • (adjective)
: northern

Posted by Kama (Member # 3022) on :

Who would like to use the word septentrional if they can say northern?

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

I waited up all night to see the Septentrional Illuminations.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for April 7th is:

1 : being in a state of confusion : lacking composure
*2 : broken-down, worn

Posted by Darling (Member # 2970) on :

I wonder if Dobie has been feeling raddled lately, and if that is why he has posted no new words of the day since April 4th.

I also wonder, incidentally, how far this thread is from critical mass.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Well, according to the Catholic Church, Easter is THE critical mass.

And look! I got the first post on THIS page too!!!!!

[This message has been edited by Bob_Scopatz (edited April 08, 2002).]

Posted by Jeni (Member # 1454) on :

The Word of the Day for April 9 is:

confection • \kun-FEK-shun\ • (noun)
*1 : a sweet food or fancy dish prepared from a variety of ingredients; also : candy
2 : a piece of fine craftsmanship

[This message has been edited by Jeni (edited April 09, 2002).]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The "Word of the Day" thread is confection for Hatrack.

Posted by Darling (Member # 2970) on :

Amen, Bob! I love this thread!

Side note: We have already passed Easter. And, to use the Word of the Day, I still have some confections left, although no chocolate...pooh!

Posted by Jeni (Member # 1454) on :

The Word of the Day for April 10 is:

triskaidekaphobia • \triss-kye-deh-kuh-FOH-bee-uh\ • (noun)
: fear of the number 13

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Triskaidekaphobia is the reason many high rise buildings do not officially have a 13th floor.

Posted by Ron Lambert (Member # 2872) on :

The next month when there is a Friday the 13th is September, so triskaidekaphobes can rest easy until then.

Posted by Zevlag (Member # 1405) on :

I show no sign of triskaidekaphobia, as a matter of fact I have exactly the oposite, 13 is my lucky number.

[This message has been edited by Zevlag (edited April 10, 2002).]

Posted by Darling (Member # 2970) on :

Triskaidekaphobia is an incredibly cool word to say.

[This message has been edited by Darling (edited April 10, 2002).]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word of the day for 4/18/2002 is:

exhilarate • \ig-ZIH-luh-rayt\ • (verb)
1 a : to make cheerful b : enliven, excite
*2 : refresh, stimulate

Posted by twinky (Member # 693) on :

(I like the word "insouciant.")

A colloquialism:

banzored (n.) - 1) banned.

Posted by Diosmel Duda (Member # 2180) on :

Seeing that it has somehow become April 18 exhilarated my heart rate.

And it saddens me that Dobie seems to be banzored.

[This message has been edited by Diosmel Duda (edited April 11, 2002).]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

It is rather exhilarating to find out that it is 4/18/2002. Especially since I have some major projects due by today.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for April 12, 2002 is:

palatable • \PAL-uh-tuh-bul\ • (adjective)
*1 : agreeable to the palate or taste : savory
2 : pleasing or agreeable to the mind : acceptable

Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on :

Hatrack is the most palatable online community I have ever come across.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for April 13, 2002 is:

haplology • \hap-LAH-luh-jee\ • (noun)
: contraction of a word by omission of one or more similar sounds or syllables

Posted by Ron Lambert (Member # 2872) on :

The race of the Hobbits originated when their first ancestors enlisted the aid of a gynecologist instead of a gynecologyologist, and the medicine he gave them caused them to have haploid children, which is why the race of Hobbits thereafter were called "Halflings." (And you thought it referred to their height!)

Oh, I'm supposed to use the word. OK, shortening "gynecologyologist" to "gynecologist" is an example of haplology, though also, arguably, the scientific explanation for the origin of Hobbits should also be allowed as an alternate definition.

Hee.
(Short for hee-hee. That's also an example.)

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for Sunday April 14, 2002 is:

quiescent • \kwye-EH-sunt or kwee-EH-sunt\ • (adjective)
*1 : marked by inactivity or repose : tranquilly at rest
2 : causing no trouble or symptoms

Posted by Zevlag (Member # 1405) on :

This board is usually quiescent on Sunday? eh

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for Monday April 15, 2002 is:

Of foreign origin; introduced from outside; pertaining to a disease
that's observed far from the area it originates in.

[From Latin ec-, variant of ex- (out of) + Greek -demic (on the pattern of
epidemic), from demos (people).]

Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on :

Had they caught the breast cancer sooner, it wouldn't have lead to the ecdemic tumors in her lungs.

Posted by Ron Lambert (Member # 2872) on :

"Once the Earthians achieve star travel, the human plague will be ecdemic. The time to act is now!" – Message intercepted by SETI. Officially dismissed as random static. A few experts point out that it was in English, so must have been intended for our reception, which indicates this is the work of interstellar pranksters just trying to get a rise out of us.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word of the day for 4/16/2002 is:

anopsia (an-OP-see-uh) noun, also anopsy or anopia

Absence of sight, due to a missing eye or other structural problem.

[From Greek an- (not) + -opia (pertaining to sight).]

Posted by Fael (Member # 3015) on :

As the sound decreased and the shaking quit, I realized I was quite effectively sealed in under tons of earth. Deep in the underground with no way out. No light penetrated the tunnel and I felt as one with anopsia. I turned from the heap and blindly followed the tunnel hoping for some source of light to convince me this was only temporay.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word of the day for 4/17/2002 is:

deflagrate (DEF-luh-grayt) verb tr. and intr.

To burn or cause to burn something rapidly and violently.

[From Latin deflagratus, past participle of deflagrare (to burn down),
from de- (intensive prefix) + flagrare (to blaze).]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for 4/18/2002 is:

Sleepless.

noun

One afflicted with insomnia.

[From Latin in- (not) + Middle English sompnolent, from Old French, from
Latin somnolentus, from somnus (sleep).]

Posted by Jeni (Member # 1454) on :

I am an insomnolent.

Posted by Fael (Member # 3015) on :

I loved the movie Insomnolent in Seattle!

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for 4/19/2002 is:

1. Haughty; arrogant.

2. Pretentious.

[From Latin fastuosus, from fastus (arrogance).]

Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on :

I'd come across as fastuous if I used a word like that in my every day vernacular.

Posted by Fael (Member # 3015) on :

Facetious people do not live fastuous lives.

Posted by Unseen (Member # 3227) on :

Would I be correct in thinking that memes are percieved as fastuous?

Posted by Unseen (Member # 3227) on :

The word of the day for 4-20-02 is:

Perfidy (PUR-fi-dee) noun
1. Deliberate breach of faith; calculated violition of trust; treachery
2. The act or instance of treachery
(From the Latin perfidia for treacherous)

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

It used to be considered the highest act of perfidy to usurp the role of posting the next word of the day. Now that Dobie is gone, however, it's just a huge help!

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word of the day for 4/22/2002 is:

roman a clef (ro-mahn uh KLAY) noun

A novel that depicts historical figures and events under the guise
of fiction.

[From French, literally, a novel with a key.]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for April 23 is:

orihon (OR-ee-hon) noun

A book or manuscript folded like an accordion: a roll of paper inscribed
on one side only, folded backwards and forwards.

[From Japanese, ori (fold), + hon (book).]

Here's a picture of an orihon: http://www2.odn.ne.jp/reliure/imgs3/k_orihon.jpg

[This message has been edited by Bob_Scopatz (edited April 23, 2002).]

Posted by Doug J (Member # 1323) on :

A couple goes to the resturant. The wife turns to the husband and asks "Orihon the list or not?

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word of the day for April 24, 2002 is:

amphigory (AM-fi-gor-ee) noun, also amphigouri

A nonsensical piece of writing, usually in verse form, typically composed
as a parody.

[From French amphigouri.]

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Oh, it's the story of an amphigory
That was more gory than amphi.
About a man cooking meth in his home
....something something...yah he was stoned.

...and so on, I don't have the energy for meter at the moment.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for April 25th, 2002 is:

conspectus (kuhn-SPEK-tuhs) noun

A general survey, synopsis, outline, or digest of something.

[From Latin conspectus, past participle of conspicere, from con- (complete)
+ spicere (to look).]

Posted by Diosmel Duda (Member # 2180) on :

Surveys: first they inspect us; then the conspectus.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Look, I don't care if you can distill Kant's works into three pithy paragraphs," said the warden, expectorating on to and across my conspectus.

"Your categorical imperative won't get you far when the prisoners begin to riot. You better learn the architectonics of creating sublime cusine out of government cheese and stale bread or we're going to have a serious critique on our hands."

*Sigh*

How did I get myself into yet another recreation of the Stanford Prison Experiment?

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

That's to make up for yesterday's pathetic attempt.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word of the day for April 26th is:

magnum opus (MAG-num OH-puhs) noun

A great work of literature, music, art, etc., especially the finest
work of an individual.

[From Latin magnum opus, from magnum, neuter of magnus (large), opus (work).]

Posted by Doug J (Member # 1323) on :

"Bespectacled, bearded and balding, Mr. Chkhartishvili is faintly ill at ease about fame. For years, he earned his living translating Japanese literature and working on what he still considers his magnum opus, a gloomy book entitled `The Writer and Suicide.' His idea of a good time is to stroll around a cemetery."
Guy Chazan, Roll Over, Dostoyevsky: Serious Russian Writers Reinvent the Thriller, The Wall Street Journal, Feb 25, 2002.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for April 27 is:

namby-pamby • \nam-bee-PAM-bee\ • (adjective)
1 : lacking in character or substance : insipid
*2 : weak, indecisive

Posted by GhostofBob_Scopatz (Member # 3394) on :

The Word of the Day for April 28 is:

kakistocracy • \kak-uh-STAH-kruh-see\ • (noun)
: government by the worst people

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word of the day for April 29, 2002 is:

chutzpah (KHOOT-spuh, HOOT-) noun, also chutzpa

Shameless impudence, brazen nerve, gall, effrontery.

[From Yiddish khutspe, from Late Hebrew huspa.]

Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on :

She's got a lot of chutzpah, showing up at my wedding in a white dress.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for April 30, 2002 is:

mensch (mench, mensh) noun, plural menschen (MEN-chuhn, MEN-shuhn) or mensches

A decent, upright, honorable person.

[From Yiddish mentsh (man, human being), from Middle High German mensch,
from Old High German mennisco.]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

zaftig (ZAF-tik, -tig) adjective

Full-figured, pleasingly plump, buxom.

[From Yiddish zaftik (juicy), from Middle High German (saftec), from saft
(juice), from Old High German saf (sap).]

Posted by Fael (Member # 3015) on :

At the museum the masters paintings are filled with zaftig bodies, make some of us wish we lived in an earlier age.

Posted by Fael (Member # 3015) on :

At the museum the masters paintings are filled with zaftig bodies, make some of us wish we lived in an earlier age.

Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on :

"Funny, zaftig Margret Cho"

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word of the day for May 2, 2002 is:

kvetch (kvech) verb intr.

To complain habitually, whine; gripe.

noun

1. A chronic complainer.

2. A complaint.

[From Yiddish kvetshn (squeeze, pinch, complain), from Middle High German
quetschen (to squeeze).]

Posted by aretee (Member # 1743) on :

My students kvetch about doing work in school.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for May 3, 2002 is:

schlep (shlep) also schlepp, shlep, shlepp

verb tr.

To drag or haul something.

verb intr.

To move clumsily or tediously.

noun

1. A tedious journey.

2. Someone who is slow or awkward.

[From Yiddish shlepn (to drag, pull) from Middle High German sleppen, from
Middle Low German slepen.]

Posted by aretee (Member # 1743) on :

The young schlep schleped on the schlep.

(Are you going to smurf the smurf all the way to the smurf?)

Posted by Fael (Member # 3015) on :

I refuse to try and come up with anything after artee's artful announcement

Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on :

Usually, people just schlep through alliteration, but Fael makes it just roll of the tongue.

Posted by Fael (Member # 3015) on :

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for May 4, 2002 is:

The Word of the Day for May 4 is:

1 : consisting of or lasting for four years
*2 : occurring or being done every four years

Posted by Unseen (Member # 3227) on :

For college dorm residents, cleaning the room is often a quadrennial chore.

Posted by Ron Lambert (Member # 2872) on :

Another quadrennial chore is replacing the incumbent oaf in the White House. Why can't we ever pick political leaders based on merit? When is the last time we had a president who wouldn't have been over his head trying to be mayor of a moderate-sized town? When is the last time we had a president who was qualified to do anything better than work in the mail room at GM?

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for Cinco de Mayo, 2002 is:

courseware • \KORSS-wair\ • (noun)
: educational software

Posted by Ron Lambert (Member # 2872) on :

My courseware teaches me that Mexico was grief-stricken when the Titanic sank, because the ship was meant to sail on to Veracruz after stopping in New York, and it carried a huge consignment of mayonnaise. The Mexicans had been so eagerly anticipating the improvement in their sandwiches, that when they heard the Titanic had sunk, their keen disappointment led them to declare a day of national mourning that they observe to this day. They called it "Sinko-de-Mayo."

Posted by aretee (Member # 1743) on :

My quadrennial courseware was outdated by the time I graduated.

Sinko de Mayo, that was...um...good? *chuckles*

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for 5/6/02 is:

estoppel (e-STOP-el) noun

A bar preventing one from asserting a claim inconsistent from what was
previously stated, especially when it has been relied upon by others.

[From Old French estoupail (bung, cork) from estouper (stopper).]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for May 7, 2002 is:

laches (LACH-iz) noun

Negligence in the performance of a duty or claiming an opportunity,
especially the failure to assert a legal claim in time, that makes it
invalid.

[From Middle English lachesse, from Anglo French, from Middle French
laschesse, from Old French lasche (slack), ultimately from Latin laxare
(to loosen).]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word of the day for May 8, 2002 is:

solatium (so-LAY-shee-um) noun

Compensation for emotional suffering, injured feeling, inconvenience,
grief, etc. (as opposed to physical injury, financial loss, for example).

[From Latin solatium, variant of solacium (to comfort), from solari
(to console).]

Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on :

I live in the hope of some solatium in spite of my past laches.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for May 9, 2002 is:

sui juris (SOO-eye joor-is, SOO-ee) adjective

Legally competent to manage one's affairs or assume responsibility.

[From Latin sui juris, from sui (of one's own) juris (right).]

Posted by kenspigle (Member # 3443) on :

Sorry I'm a few days late on this but I am new to the site and BRAND new to "Word of the Day" - Was it Tenzing Norgay who said, "We Sherpas were schleppers for Edmund on Everest"? If not, it should have been

Ken

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Welcome Ken, and thank you for that fine example of the principle of sui juris.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for May 10, 2002 is:

mittimus (MIT-uh-muhs) noun

An official order to commit someone to prison.

[From Latin, literally "we send" from mittere (to send).]

Posted by kenspigle (Member # 3443) on :

Dateline: Boston, January 23, 2003: Recently elected Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney today issued a mittimus for the arrest and incarceration of talk show host Don Imus, for alleged "crimes against good taste." An appeal is expected.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 11 is:

uxorial • \uk-SOR-ee-ul or ug-ZOR-ee-ul\ • (adjective)
: of, relating to, or characteristic of a wife

Posted by LadyDove (Member # 3000) on :

Though Issa was Kreb's sister, her role at his hearth was uxorial.

[This message has been edited by LadyDove (edited May 11, 2002).]

Posted by Ron Lambert (Member # 2872) on :

His skull was dented by the uxorial rolling pin, but it made no difference in his state of consciousness since he was feeling no pain anyway.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 12 is:

memento • \muh-MEN-toh\ • (noun)
: something that serves to warn or remind; also : souvenir

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 13 is:

indagate • \IN-duh-gayt\ • (verb)
: to search into : investigate

Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on :

I must indagate this thread if I want to improve my vernacular.

Posted by Human (Member # 2985) on :

I indagate many things.

Posted by Ron Lambert (Member # 2872) on :

Oops! Nobody did anything for May 12. OK, "The knot on his head was a memento of the uxorial rolling pin."

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Connie Chung was looking for something funky to bring back from her trip to Ecuador so she picked up a novelty shrunken head. She calls it her 'memento maury.'

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for 5/14/2002 is:

Siberia (sy-BEER-ee-uh) noun

An undesirable or isolated location assigned to those who have fallen
out of favor or being disciplined.

[After Siberia, a vast region of Russia in Northern Asia, used as a place
of exile by the former USSR.]

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Zal, all alone in a Siberia of wry humor, cries out, "Where are my props people? Someone show me the love!"

Posted by Ron Lambert (Member # 2872) on :

When the KGB leader, Beria, ordered his secret agent in Spain to track down a defector who had escaped to that country, the agent replied, "Si, Beria."

Posted by ludosti (Member # 1772) on :

*giggle giggle* Ron is becoming quite funny.

I remember my early years of college, when I was so poor, I could only afford the parking offered in Siberia, far away from any of my classes.

Posted by silentbob106 (Member # 3477) on :

I am a pilot, and last week i was flying a cargo plane over Siberia and we crashed; because it is so cold in Siberia i looked to find something warm only to realize my shipment was boxes full of lingerie.

[This message has been edited by silentbob106 (edited May 14, 2002).]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for 5/15/2002 is:

lido (LEE-do) noun

A fashionable beach resort or a public open-air swimming pool.

[From Lido, an island reef in northeastern Italy, between the Lagoon of
Venice and the Adriatic Sea, site of a famous beach resort.]

Posted by Fael (Member # 3015) on :

When silentbob106 crashed the plane in Siberia, we all thought we would freeze, but then we found that we were right next to a lido for the polar bear club.

Posted by Ron Lambert (Member # 2872) on :

But when silentbob106 waddled into the Polar Bear Club swaddled with layers and layers of lingerie, we all laughed until our sides hurt so bad we had to be administered lidocaine.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for May 15, 2002 is:

Rosetta stone (ro-ZET-uh stohn) noun

A clue or key that helps in understanding of a previously insolvable
puzzle.

[After Rosetta stone, a black basalt stone tablet found in 1799 near
Rosetta in northern Egypt in the Nile river delta. The tablet, now held
in the British Museum, has the same message written in two languages
(Egyptian and Greek) using three different scripts (hieroglyphic, demotic,
and Greek). Discovery of this tablet, dating from 196 BC, made possible
the interpretation of ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs.]

Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on :

Will the human genome really be the Rosetta stone we've been searching for in the fight against cancer?

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

*Ahem*

quote:

He looked deep into her eyes. She was hot. Wore a black leather jacket. Thin cause she smoked so many Gauloise Blondes. And a mind that would not quit. A grad student in linguistics. Undergrad in comp lit AND classics from UC Santa Cruz. Could wrap her tongue and throat around any sound or syllable from Farsi to Tagalog.
He leaned in a little closer. "Jenny," he whispered. "Will you be my personal Rosetta Stone?"
She laughed. Well, snorted really. "How long did it take you to come up with that one?"

A pause. He squirmed. It had been completely impromptu. Had popped into his head and come out of his mouth like he was expecting some zenith of a moment. "Damn," he thought. "Where's the rewind?"

"No I will most emphatically not be your personal Rostta Stone," she said. "I will not be your personal anything. This relationship will not be based on ownership. You know how I feel about..."

He didn't hear the rest of what she said because he was counting her tobacco-stained teeth.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word of the day for Friday May 15, 2002 is:

pharos (FAR-os) noun

A lighthouse.

[After Pharos, a peninsula in Northern Egypt in the Mediterranean Sea, site
of an ancient lighthouse built by Ptolemy, one of the Seven Wonders of the
World.]

[This message has been edited by Bob_Scopatz (edited May 17, 2002).]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 18 is:

congruous • \KONG-groo-uss\ • (adjective)
1 a : being in agreement, harmony, or correspondence *b : conforming to the circumstances or requirements of a situation : appropriate
2 : marked or enhanced by harmonious agreement among constituent elements

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

There were two clubs in that part of Bucharest--the Lido and the Pharos. I knew it wasn't congruous with the black tag on my chest, but I had a greenie fresh out of the MTC who was going to keel over with hunger if we didn't get something to eat and soon, so we stepped in to the Lido. While we were gulping down chorba de perishoare, the floor show started.

Damn! I had forgotten about that aspect of the Lido. "Elder," I said. "Keep your eyes in your soup bowl." I'm going to go have them wrap our pork steaks to go.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 19 is:

edulcorate • \ih-DUL-kuh-rayt\ • (verb)
: to free from harshness (as of attitude) : soften

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for May 20, 2002 is:

eagre (EE-guhr) noun

A high tidal wave rushing upstream into an estuary.
Also known as tidal bore.

[Of obscure origin.]

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

The eagre caught him just as he reached the mouth of the narrow estuary on his way back up the river. The water boiled around his kayak, lifted it up and thrust him up the channel. He rode it like a champion until the wave lurched slightly, catching his paddle in the water and spinning him down into the crushing flood.

Posted by Ron Lambert (Member # 2872) on :

He camped beside the estuary, because he was eager to see an eagre.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for May 21, 2002 is:

imprest (IM-prest) noun

An advance of money, especially one made to carry out some business for
a government.

Also, archaic past tense and past participle of impress.

[From obsolete imprest (to lend), from Italian imprestare.]

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

So the imprest issued to me was a few ounces of uranium (and since when has the disbursement office been authorized to deal in uranium?), who was I to question form of payment? All I knew was that I needed to catch a redeye flight to Honolulu and meet up with one of Kashoggi's boys ( who would be posing as an attache from Saudi Arabia).
I figured the Feds were probably planning on picking him up after the exchange---but that was just a guess. They never tell me the whole plan. I don't even know for sure what I'm supposed to be getting in return. Probably information---a list of operatives, the numbers and locations of offshore accounts. Whatever.

One of these days it's going to be a briefcase (or more likely a duffel bag---briefcases are way too cliched these days) full of cash. Clean cash. And one of these days I might just walk away with it.

After all, that's why I'm hired to do these jobs in the first place---because I'm untraceable.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for May 22, 2002 is:

endue (en-DOO, -DYOO) verb tr., also indue

1. To invest, bestow, or endow with a gift, quality, trait, or power.

2. To put on (an item of clothing).

[From Middle English enduen (to draw on), from Old French enduire
(to lead in), from Latin inducere (to put on).]

Posted by aretee (Member # 1743) on :

The manly men endued the tight tights.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

*applauds aratee's use of the word in a sentence that employs both definitions*

The only problem with Bob being endued with the power to post the word of the day is that now he doesn't delight us with his lovely sentences using the word in context.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Bob has taken on the mantle of the "Word of the Day" as another might endue the robes of office, reluctantly but with pride and awe of those who have gone before.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for May 23, 2002 is:

1. Happening every two years.

2. Lasting two years.

3. Taking two years to complete its life cycle.

noun

1. An event occurring once in two years.

2. A plant that takes two years to complete its life cycle, such as beet
and carrot.

[From biennium (a two-year period), from Latin bi- (two) + annus (year).]

Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on :

I'm having one of those biennial birthdays next month which is odd.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for May 24, 2002 is:

quacksalver (KWAK-sal-vuhr) noun

A quack.

[From obsolete Dutch (now kwakzalver), from quack (boast) + salve (ointment).]

Posted by CalvinMaker (Member # 2032) on :

Go quacksalver.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

I was seriously salivating, I mean a mouthful of saliva here, with culinary anticipation over the herb-encrusted duck that was supposed to be soon coming my way. This was no mallard of the Peking variety, but one doused with green tea, jasmine water, honey produced by bees who live on an island just off the Taishan coast and coated with all matter of mysterious weeds and fungi. And the fungi is what was making me salivate most. Of course, there had been another reason for me to be sitting in an herbalist’s shop just off of Harrison in Oakland’s Chinatown (I won’t say exactly where), but at the time I was not going to let thoughts about my prostate diminish my appetite.

The duck was numbingly good. But the guy who sold it to me (and who hasn’t cashed out a 401(k) so they could eat game-fowl?) was a quacksalver of the upmost variety. A real gem of witch doctor.

So here I sit on the N-Judah, on my way to UCSF, wondering if relations with my wife is going to become a biennial affair, hoping that the chemical cocktail that’s about to be pumped into my veins doesn’t marinate me up real good for the grim fellow with his dulled, rusty scythe.

It was really tasty duck, though. An epicurean delight.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for May 25, 2002 is:

minatory • \MIH-nuh-tor-ee or MYE-nuh-tor-ee\ • (adjective)
: having a menacing quality : threatening

Did you know?
Knowing that "minatory" means "threatening," can you take a guess at a related word? If you're familiar with mythology, perhaps you guessed "Minotaur," the name of the bull-headed, people-eating monster of Crete. "Minotaur" is a good guess, but as terrifying as the monster sounds, its name isn't related to today's word. The relative we're searching for is actually "menace." "Minatory" and "menace" both come from derivatives of the Latin verb "minari," which means "to threaten." "Minatory" was borrowed directly from the Latin "minatorius." "Menace" was borrowed from the Middle French "manace, menace," which came from "minac-, minax," meaning "threatening."

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

His predatory behaviour
I like my vengeance
poured out in another flavor.

Her soft elliptic pretense
Your hard ecliptic defense
It loses savor
salted with cursory suspence.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 26 is:

homogeneous • \hoh-muh-JEE-nee-uss\ • (adjective)
1 : of the same or a similar kind or nature
*2 : of uniform structure or composition throughout

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for May 27, 2002 is:

alembic (uh-LEM-bik) noun

1. An apparatus formerly used in distilling substances.

2. Something that refines, purifies, or transforms.

[From Middle English alambic, from Old French, from Medieval Latin
alembicus, from Arabic al-anbiq, from al (the) + anbiq (still), from
Greek ambix (cup).]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 28 is:

debonair • \deh-buh-NAIR\ • (adjective)
*1 : suave, urbane
2 : lighthearted, nonchalant

Posted by Fael (Member # 3015) on :

I thought he was so sauve and debonair until he got up to dance.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for May 29, 2002 is:

1. A holy war by Muslims against those believed hostile to Islam.

2. Any hostile campaign for an idea or belief.

[From Arabic jihad (struggle).]

Another word that shares the same root as today's word is mujahedin
(guerrilla fighter).

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for May 30, 2002 is:

houri (HOOR-ee) noun

1. One of the beautiful virgins provided for faithful Muslims in the

2. A voluptuously attractive young woman.

[From French, from Persian huri, from Arabic huri, plural of haura
(dark-eyed woman).]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for May 31, 2002 is:

talisman (TAL-is-man, -iz-) noun

1. An object, such as a stone, believed to have occult powers to
keep evil away and bring good fortune to its wearer.

2. Anything that has magical powers and brings miraculous effects.

[From French or Spanish, from Arabic tilasm, from Greek telesma
(consecration) from telein (to consecrate or complete) from telos, result.]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word for the day for June 1, 2002 is:

phantasm • \FAN-taz-um\ • (noun)
*1 : a product of fantasy: as a : delusive appearance : illusion b : ghost, specter c : a figment of the imagination
2 : a mental representation of a real object

Posted by Ron Lambert (Member # 2872) on :

Poor Bob. Are you feeling neglected?

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 2 is:

rectitude • \REK-tuh-tood ("oo" as in "food")\ • (noun)
1 : the quality or state of being straight
*2 : moral integrity : righteousness
3 : the quality or state of being correct in judgment or procedure

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word of the day for June 3, 2002 is:

niddering (NID-uhr-ing) noun (note: also using as an adjective)

A coward or wretch.

[From erroneous reading of Middle English nithing, from Old English nithing.
This form of the word originated in the 1596 text of historian William of
Malmesbury.]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The word of the day for June 4, 2002 is:

contemn • \kun-TEM\ • (verb)
: to view or treat with contempt : scorn

Did you know?
"Contemn" is derived from the Latin verb "contemnere," a word formed by combining "con-" and "temnere" ("to despise"). Surprisingly, our verb may have come within a hairsbreadth of being spelled "contempn." The Middle French word "contempner" arrived in Middle English as "contempnen," but that extra "p" disappeared, leaving us with "contemn." You may be wondering about the connection between "contemn" and "contempt," and, not surprisingly, they are related. "Contempt" comes from the Latin "contemptus," which comes from "contemnere." "Contemn" first turned up in print in the 15th century; "contempt" dates from the 14th century.

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day WOTD

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

I contemn you to a lifetime of suffering and pain just doesn't have the same ring to it. I think it's because the 't' sound is unvoiced; whereas, with the 'd' sound you can really but some oomph behind it.

Try it:

I contemn you!

I condemn you!

Posted by Ophelia (Member # 653) on :

I prefer the voiceless "t" actually...voiced consonants are just too soft-sounding to really be insulting. And "d" just doesn't get the spit flying the way "t" does.

I contemn those voiced consonants! Unless they're fricatives, cuz "v" is just too fun to say!

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

quote:
voiced consonants are just too soft-sounding to really be insulting.

Not if you can put some serious bass behind it. You can roll that 'd' down an octave as you slide over to the nasal sound at the end.

I do agree with you, however, that, on the whole, voicless consonants are much more insulting.

And fricatives *are* fun. Why aren't there more words that start with 'v'?

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 5 is:

argot • \AHR-gut or AHR-goh\ • (noun)
: an often more or less secret vocabulary and idiom peculiar to a particular group

Did you know?
We borrowed "argot" from French in the mid-1800s, although our language already had several words covering its meaning. There was "jargon," which harks back to Middle French by way of Middle English (where it meant "twittering of birds"); it had been used for specialized (and often obscure or pretentious) vocabulary since the 1600s. There was also "lingo," which had been around for almost a hundred years, and which is connected to the Latin word "lingua" ("language"). English novelist and lawyer Henry Fielding used it of "court gibberish"—what we tend to call "legalese." In fact, the suffixal ending "-ese" is our newest means of indicating arcane vocabulary. One of its very first applications at the turn of the 20th century was for "American 'golfese.'"

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

A Francophile mayor in a small town in Winnipeg tried to put an embargo on the argot from Fargo, but then dropped the idea, claiming that at the time he'd been "feeling sluggish from eating so much escargot."

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 6 is:

feckless • \FEK-luss\ • (adjective)
1 : weak, ineffective
*2 : worthless, irresponsible

Did you know?
Here is a fascinating word fact for you: someone "feckless" is lacking in "feck." Now then, you may ask, what the heck is "feck"? In fact, "feck" means "value" ("No feck would come from it") or "quantity" ("A whole feck of them came"). This alteration of the Middle English "effect" originated (and most often occurs) in Scots, and its original meaning was essentially "a majority." So something without "feck" is without value or effect—that is, "useless," or, alternatively, "irresponsible." In the past, "feckful" (meaning "efficient," "sturdy," or "powerful") made an occasional appearance. But in this case, the weak has outlived the strong: "feckless" is a commonly used English word, but "feckful" has fallen out of use.

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 7 is:

greasy spoon • \GREE-see-SPOON\ • (noun)
: a dingy small cheap restaurant

Did you know?
"Greasy spoon" was first cooked up in the 1920s. In the early decades of its use, the words in the surrounding context were usually along the lines of "lousy," "wind up eating in," "slinging hash," "the underside of society," "settle for," or "rather starve." And while things haven't changed entirely, a recent wave of nostalgia has elevated the status of greasy spoons. Since the 1970s, the descriptions might contain words like "fabled," "distinction," "beloved," "classic," "an institution," "fondness for," and "comfort food." Now you can consult a "Greasy Spoon Guide" and read up on "Best Greasy Spoons," or lunch at a diner "restored to look like a greasy spoon." Some of these eateries are now even named "The Greasy Spoon."

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day Webster's

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 8 is:

foible • \FOY-bul\ • (noun)
1 : the part of a sword or foil blade between the middle and point
*2 : a minor flaw or shortcoming in character or behavior : weakness

Did you know?
The weakest part of a sword blade is the portion between the middle and the pointed tip. Back in the mid-1600s, English speakers borrowed the French word "foible" to refer to that most easily broken part of the sword or foil. Despite the superficial resemblance, "foible" does not come from "foil." The French "foible" was an adjective meaning "weak." (That French word, which is now obsolete, is derived from the same Old French term, "feble," that gives us "feeble.") The English "foible" soon came to be applied not only to weaknesses in blades, but also to minor failings in character. It appeared in print with that use in 1673, and now the "character flaw" sense is considerably more popular than the original sword application.

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

shunpike • \SHUN-pyke\ • (noun)
: a side road used to avoid the toll on or the speed and traffic of a superhighway

Did you know?
America's love affair with the automobile and the development of a national system of superhighways (along with the occasional desire to seek out paths less-traveled) is a story belonging to the 20th century. So the word "shunpike," too, must be a 20th-century phenomenon, right? Nope. Toll roads have actually existed for centuries (the word "turnpike" has meant "tollgate" since at least 1533). In fact, toll roads were quite common in 19th-century America, and "shunpike" has been describing side roads since the middle of that century, almost half a century before the first Model T rolled out of the factory.

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

visage • \VIH-zij\ • (noun)
*1 : the face, countenance, or appearance of a person or sometimes an animal
2 : aspect, appearance

Did you know?
Writers occasionally come face-to-face with the fact that "face" is a pretty generic word that seems to have no ordinary synonyms. But it has a few synonyms of the high-flown variety. "Physiognomy," for instance, refers to facial features or expression thought to reveal qualities of mind or character ("I thought I could detect in his physiognomy a mind owning better qualities than his father ever possessed. . . ." — Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights). "Countenance" is usually used to refer to one's face and the mood revealed by it ("Mina struggled hard to keep her brave countenance. . . ." — Bram Stoker, Dracula). "Visage" works double duty, referring to both physical appearance and a display of emotion. It can also refer to the appearance of nonliving things, as in "the dirty visage of the old abandoned factory."

From same source as the previous few...

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

He tried to hide his feckless visage behind a pair of RayBan Aviator shades, but the moment you saw his smug grin you knew who he was---the king of the cold call, the Czar of zip-code targeting, the bulldog of the boiler room, the maven of microcaps Bruce Davis, the cocaine-fueled, hard pitching, elderly-scamming tetris-playing, sushi-scarfing, prince of the sweaty den of thieves known as Walters, Jacoby and Bidwell, the slimiest firm in the dankest part of Battery Place.

And he's about to become your son-in-law.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 11 is:

flout • \FLOWT ("ow" as in "cow")\ • (verb)
*1 : to treat with contemptuous disregard : scorn
2 : to indulge in scornful behavior

Did you know?
Watch out when using "flaunt" and "flout." Critics have been complaining about the confusion of these two words since the early 1900s. "Flaunt" means "to display ostentatiously," and most usage commentators consider it an error to use "flaunt" with the meaning "to treat with contemptuous disregard" (even though some admit to doing it themselves). Many educated writers have used "flaunt" in the "flout" sense for years, but the notoriety of the controversy is so great, and the belief that it's wrong to use "flaunt" for "flout" is so deep-seated, that we think you would do best to keep the two words distinct.

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Well I don't know about you...

But I flout when I flaunt just like I prance when I dance.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

And let's not forget that to truly flaunt you have to be totally orchidaceous.

quote:
The Word of the Day for June 30 is:
: of, relating to, or resembling the orchids
: showy, ostentatious

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

I'd just like to remind everyone that I am so totally full of feck it ain't even funny.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 12 is:

tyro • \TYE-roh\ • (noun)
: a beginner in learning : novice

Did you know?
The word "tyro" is hardly a newcomer to Western language. It comes from the Latin "tiro," which means "young soldier," "new recruit," or more generally, "novice." The word was sometimes spelled "tyro" as early as Medieval Latin, and can be spelled "tyro" or "tiro" in English (though "tyro" is the more common American variant). Since its entrance into English, use of "tyro" has never been restricted to the original "young soldier" meaning of the Latin term. Writers in the 17th and 18th centuries wrote of tyros in various fields and occupations. Herman Melville used "tyro" to refer to men new to whaling and life at sea. More recently, a Newsweek article referred to Dr. Benjamin Spock's advice to "tyro parents."

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

I guess someone who loves young soldiers would be a tyromaniac.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 13 is:

hoise • \HOYZ\ • (verb)
: lift, raise; especially : to raise into position by or as if by means of tackle

Did you know?
The connection between "hoise" and "hoist" is a bit confusing. The two words are essentially synonymous variants, but "hoist" is far more common. You'll rarely encounter "hoise" in any of its regular forms: "hoise," "hoised," or "hoising." But a variant of its past participle shows up fairly frequently as part of a set expression. And now, here's the confusing part—that variant past participle is "hoist"! The expression is "hoist with one's petard," which means "hurt by one's own scheme." This oft-heard phrase owes its popularity to Shakespeare's Hamlet: "For 'tis the sport to have the engineer hoist with his own petar[d]." (A petard, by the way, is a medieval explosive device that had an unfortunate tendency to blow up the person setting it off.)

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Jeni (Member # 1454) on :

Sometimes I just want to hoise Bob into the air and whup his butt!

Posted by jehovoid (Member # 2014) on :

Hoised by one's own petard... ah, the Elizabethan predecessor to Wile E. Coyote's infamous ACME rockets. In Jonson's Volpone there's a scene that reminds me of this great Bugs Bunny cartoon. Those Warner Brothers knew there stuff.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 14 is:

whirligig • \WUR-lih-gihg\ • (noun)
*1 : a child's toy having a whirling motion
2 : merry-go-round
3 a : one that continuously whirls, moves, or changes b : a whirling or circling course (as of events)

Did you know?
English speakers, and particularly children, began spinning whirligigs as early as the 15th century. Since then, "whirligig" has acquired several meanings beyond its initial toy sense. It even has a place in the common name of the "whirligig beetles," members of the family Gyrinidae that swiftly swim in circles on the surface of still water. The word "whirligig" comes to us from the Middle English "whirlegigg" ("whirling top"), which is itself from "whirlen," meaning "to whirl," and "gigg," meaning "top." As you may have guessed, our "whirl" comes from "whirlen" too. Also, we acquired the word "gig" from a form of "gigg." "Gig" initially meant "something that whirls," but now usually names a long light boat or a light two-wheeled one-horse carriage.

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Fael (Member # 3015) on :

The new neighbors seemed nice enough until they unloaded their collection of whirligigs and began adorning their lawn.

Posted by Dan_raven (Member # 3383) on :

" and "gigg," meaning "top." "

So if I go Frog Gigging, I'm putting a Frog on a whirling top? Interesting visual.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

denegation • \deh-nih-GAY-shun\ • (noun)
: denial

Did you know?
Even if we didn't provide you with a definition, you might guess the meaning of "denegation" from the "negation" in there. Both words are ultimately derived from the Latin verb "negare," meaning "to deny," and both first arrived in English in the 15th century. "Negare" is also the source of our "abnegation" ("self-denial"), "negate" ("to deny the truth of"), and "renegade" (which originally referred to someone who leaves, and therefore denies, a religious faith). Even "deny" and "denial" are "negare" descendants. Like "denegation," they came to us from "negare" by way of Latin "denegare," which also means "to deny."

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 16 is:

ennui • \ahn-WEE\ • (noun)
: a feeling of weariness and dissatisfaction : boredom

Did you know?
The French loanword "ennui" comes from the very same Old French word that gave us "annoy." We borrowed "ennui" several centuries after absorbing "annoy" into the language. "Ennui" deals more with boredom than irritation—and a somewhat specific sort of boredom at that. It generally refers to the feeling of jadedness that can result from living a life of too much ease. The poet Charles Lloyd described it well in his 1823 "Stanzas to Ennui" when he referred to that world-weary sensation as a "soul-destroying fiend" which visits with its "pale unrest / The chambers of the human breast / Where too much happiness hath fixed its home."

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on :

I'm starting to think that the EE in my EE600 class stands for "endless ennui". Then I look at the homework and realize it stands for "extra evil".

Posted by ClaudiaTherese (Member # 923) on :

My beloved has grown sick of teen angst during his stint teaching college, and he has longed for a T-shirt proclaiming:

"I'm so bored with ennui."

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

CT, I like it!

Ennui...
whatever...

Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on :

If only it had said "eggheads enrolled," I would have known better than to take it!

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 17 is:

catbird seat • \KAT-berd-SEET\ • (noun)
: a position of great prominence or advantage

Did you know?
"In the catbird seat" was among the numerous folksy expressions with which the legendary baseball broadcaster Red Barber delighted listeners. Some say he invented the expression, others say that he dug it up from his Southern origins. But the facts actually have an odd twist. In a 1942 short story titled "The Catbird Seat," James Thurber featured a character, Mrs. Barrows, who liked to use the phrase. Another character, Joey Hart, explained that Mrs. Barrows must have picked up the expression from Red Barber. To Red, according to Joey, "sitting in the catbird seat" meant "'sitting pretty,' like a batter with three balls and no strikes on him." But, according to Barber's daughter, it was only after Barber read Thurber's story that he started using "in the catbird seat" himself!

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Sylvester (he of the slurpy sibilence) thought he was in the catbird seat until the bottom fell out of Tweedy's cage which, for some reason, was suspended over a very active dog park.

Posted by Dr. Mobius (Member # 3614) on :

I just used catbird seat in a sentence.

(I'll try harder next time, I promise.)

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 18 is:

placate • \PLAY-kayt or PLAK-ayt\ • (verb)
: to soothe or mollify especially by concessions : appease

Did you know?
To this day, "placate" carries the essential meaning of its Latin parent, the verb "placare," which the Romans used to describe the process of soothing and changing bitterness or resentment into goodwill. "Placare" also gives us the adjective "placable," ("easily placated" or "tractable") and its familiar antonym "implacable" ("impossible to appease"). The earliest uses of "placate" as a verb in English date from the late 17th century (it appeared as an adjective a few years earlier, but that use was extremely rare and now is obsolete). Originally, it was usually an offended deity who needed to be placated, but today it can be anyone who is irritated or offended and in need of soothing.

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Hatrackers! Join me. Together we will placate the ghost of Dobie.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 19 is:

indefeasible • \in-dih-FEE-zuh-bul\ • (adjective)
: not capable of being annulled or voided or undone

Did you know?
We acquired "indefeasible" in the mid-16th century by combining the English prefix "in-" ("not") with "defeasible," a word borrowed a century earlier from Anglo-French. "Defeasible" itself can be traced to an Old French verb meaning "to undo" or "to destroy." It's no surprise, then, that something indefeasible is essentially "un-undoable" or "indestructible." As you may have guessed, another member of the family is "feasible," meaning "capable of being done or carried out." Ultimately, all three—"indefeasible," "defeasible," and "feasible"—can be traced back to the Latin verb "facere," meaning "to do."

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 20 is:

oenophile • \EE-nuh-file\ • (noun)
: a lover or connoisseur of wine

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." It was the Greek word that modern English speakers chose to combine with "-phile" (Greek for "lover of") around 1930 to create "oenophile." Etymologically-inclined oenophiles are sure to know that "oenology" (the science of wine making) and "oenologist" (one versed in oenology) also trace back to the Greek root. And they may even know that "wine therapy" (use of wine for therapeutic purposes) is also known as "oenotherapy."

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 21 is:

jimjams • \JIM-jamz\ • (noun)
: jitters

Did you know?
When "jimjams" entered English in the 19th century, it referred to a specific kind of jitters—the "delirium tremens," a violent delirium caused by excessive drinking. "Jimjams" is not particularly common today, but when it is used in current American English it means simply "jitters." Etymologists aren't sure about the origin of the term. Some speculate that it came about as an alteration of "delirium tremens." Others, though uncertain of the origin of "jim" and "jam," notice that the word follows a pattern of similar words in which one sound is repeated or altered slightly. Interestingly, other words for "jitters" were formed in the same repetitive way—"whim-whams" and "heebie-jeebies" are examples.

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Jimmy, the boy who wears slim jams*, got the jimjams after eating five pounds of slim jims.

* as opposed to the 'husky' fit jams. Toughskins came in 'husky.' I was a scrawny runt so I wore the slim fit ones. I had a pair of green ones (with slightly darker green knee patches) and a pair of rust ones in addition to the classic blue.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

A similar word in sound: flim-flam. Although I prefer gimcrack when searching for an adjective to describe something of shoddy quality and dubious origin.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 22 is:

gossamer • \GAH-suh-mer\ • (adjective)
: extremely light, delicate, or tenuous

Did you know?
When the weather suddenly turns warm in the midst of the chilly days of fall, we usually say we're having "Indian summer." Back when folks in England still spoke Middle English, they would call such a reprieve from the onset of winter "gossomer," literally "goose summer." It's not completely clear why people chose that name for a late-season warm spell, but it may be because October and November were the months when people felt that geese were at their best for eating. In Middle English, "gossomer" was also the name of the filmy cobwebs that often float in the autumn air, apparently because somebody thought the webs looked like the down of a goose.

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Unseen (Member # 3227) on :

Gossamer people have a higher potential to slip out of roller coaster harnesses, or so I feared before riding Alpengeist at Busch Gardens, Williamsburg.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

regimen • \REH-juh-mun\ • (noun)
*1 : a systematic course of treatment or training
2 : government, rule
3 : a government in power : regime

Did you know?
We borrowed "regimen" straight from Latin, spelling and all. But in Latin, it simply meant "rule" or "government." In English, it usually means a system of rules or guidelines, often for living a healthy life or taking a regular dose of exercise. The Latin "regimen" derives from another Latin word, the verb "regere," which means "to lead straight" or "to rule." If you trace straight from "regere," you'll find that "regimen" has plenty of lexical kin, including "correct," "erect," "region," "rule," and "surge."

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 24 is:

: without means of communication; also : in solitary confinement

Did you know?
"Incommunicado" ultimately comes from Latin, but it made its way into English via Spanish. Journalist George Wilkins Kendall is the first known English writer to have used the word. In his 1844 Narrative of the Texan Santa Fe Expedition he wrote, "Now that I was incomunicado—now that all intercourse with my friends was cut off, . . . my situation became irksome in the extreme." The word comes from the past participle of the Spanish verb "incomunicar," meaning "to deprive of communication." The Spanish word, in turn, derives from the Latin prefix "in-" and the verb "comunicare," meaning "to communicate."

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

So I was at the bus stop the other day and I, like, realized that I, ummmm, had left my cell at Mauve's house, and it was like so horrible. I had nothing to do and the bus didn't come for like a whole ten minutes. It was like I was totally incommunicado. You know what I mean? I was like, where's a damn volleyball, you know? That movie was kind of gross though. The all hairy, big-foot, Chewbacca, Robin Williams look just really doesn't work for Tom Hanks. You know what I mean?

Posted by Lurker (Member # 3696) on :

Posted by Dr. Mobius (Member # 3614) on :

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Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 25 is:

dreadnought • \DRED-nawt\ • (noun)
1 : a warm garment of thick cloth; also : the cloth
2 : battleship
*3 : one that is among the largest or most powerful of its kind

Did you know?
"Fear nothing"—that's essentially what "dread" plus "nought" means. The name might seem a strange one for a garment, but if you consider that dreadnoughts were worn on board ship, you can appreciate the colorful name perhaps as much as the seafaring men must have appreciated the thick protection. The clothes and the cloth, first called "fearnought" in the late 18th century, came long before the battleship. Not until 1906 did the British Navy launch the HMS Dreadnought, the first battleship to have a main armament consisting entirely of big guns all of the same caliber. All ships of this type were then called "dreadnoughts." That particular type of battleship soon became obsolete, but their legacy lives on in the extended third sense of "dreadnought."

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by jehovoid (Member # 2014) on :

The tailor dreaded to get the knots out of my warm garment of thick cloth.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

The dreadnought slid lazily through the water, swaying and rocking as it went like an obese man walking down a hill his suspenders too tight and his feet crammed into a pair of imitation leather loafers, the flesh bulging out and skirting over the shoes like a yeasted bread dough that's gone awry because it was left to rise too long and the kitchen is much too warm.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 26 is:

dog days • \DOG-dayz\ • (noun plural)
*1 : the hot sultry period of summer between early July and early September in the northern hemisphere
2 : a period of stagnation or inactivity

Did you know?
Dogs aren't the only creatures uncomfortable in oppressive heat, so why does a dog get singled out in "dog days"? The dog here is actually the Dog Star, which is also called "Sirius." The star has long been associated with sultry weather in the northern hemisphere because its heliacal (i.e., early morning) rising coincides with the hottest days of summer. In the ancient Greek constellation system, this star (called "Seirios" in Greek) was considered the hound of the hunter Orion and was given the epithet "Kyon," meaning "dog." The Greek writer Plutarch referred to the hot days of summer as "hemerai kynades," literally "dog days," and a Latin translation of this expression as "dies caniculares" is the source of our English phrase.

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 27 is:

enfant terrible • \ahn-fahn-teh-REE-bluh\ • (noun)
1 a : a child whose inopportune remarks cause embarrassment *b : a person known for shocking remarks or outrageous behavior
2 : a usually young and successful person who is strikingly unorthodox, innovative, or avant-garde

Did you know?
"Enfant terrible," which literally means "terrible child" in French, sounds like something that might be uttered by a frazzled babysitter. Indeed, when English speakers first borrowed the term in the mid-19th century, it was used in reference to children—specifically, unpredictable children who blurted out outrageous remarks that embarrassed their elders. By the 1930s, the term had a broader application: an enfant terrible could be anyone—young or old—whose behavior shocked others. Now the term is also often applied to young, successful newcomers who shock or scare old-timers with their new approaches, easy successes, or disregard for tradition.

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Kama (Member # 3022) on :

Do you think some enfant terrible is going to get post no. 1000 on this thread?

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Not if I lapse into another series of dog days during the upcoming dog days of summer.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 28 is:

catercorner • \KAT-ee-kor-ner or KAT-uh-kor-ner\ • (adverb or adjective)
: in a diagonal or oblique position : on a diagonal or oblique line

Did you know?
"Catercorner" also has the variants "kitty-corner" and "catty-corner," but despite appearances, no cats were involved in creation of this word. "Cater" derives from the Middle French noun "quatre" (or "catre"), which means "four." English speakers adopted the word to refer to the four-dotted side of a die—a side important in several winning combinations in dice games. Perhaps because the four spots on a die can suggest an X, "cater" eventually came to be used dialectically with the meaning "diagonal" or "diagonally." This "cater" was combined with "corner" to form "catercorner."

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

NOTE: I'll be gone for a few days. Feel free to post a word of the day yourself...

NOTE 2: I think we should allow Dobie the honor of the 1000th post.

Posted by Khavanon (Member # 929) on :

Note that as of last night this thread is one year old.

Posted by jehovoid (Member # 2014) on :

They's gonna run outta words in a week or two... purty little words...

Posted by Unseen (Member # 3227) on :

The catercorners of parallelograms bisect each other.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 30 is:

crescent • \KREH-sunt\ • (adjective)
: marked by an increase

Did you know?
You probably know "crescent" as the shape of a moon that is less than half-illuminated. These days, "crescent" is generally used of either a waxing or waning moon, but that wasn't always the case. Originally, it referred only to the increasing illumination phase that immediately follows the new moon. That original meaning nicely reflects the meaning of the word's Latin ancestor "crescere," which means "to grow." The meaning of "crescere" also shines through when we use "crescent" as an adjective meaning "increasing" or "growing." English speakers have been using "crescent" in this way since the 16th century.

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by jehovoid (Member # 2014) on :

We learned that in third grade because New Orleans is the Crescent City.

Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on :

canorous - (kan-OR-uhs), adj.: Melodious; musical

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 2 is:

duress • \dur-RESS\ • (noun)
1 : forcible restraint or restriction
*2 : compulsion by threat; specifically : unlawful constraint

Did you know?
"Duress" is a word of hardy stock. It has been a part of the English language since the 14th century, and has a number of long-lived relatives. "Duress" itself came into Middle English through the Middle French "duresce" (meaning "hardness" or "severity"), which stems from the Latin "durus," meaning "hard." Some obvious relatives of this robust root are "durable," "endure" and "obdurate" (meaning "unyielding" or "hardened in feelings"). Some others are "dour" (meaning "harsh," "unyielding," or "gloomy") and "during." Some think the Latin word "durus" is related to the Sanskrit "daru," which means "wood."

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on :

This sentence was written under duress. Please do not think it reflects my actual opinion.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

::cracks whip::

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Ah, the canorous sound! My joy is full.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 3 is:

bon vivant • \bahn-vee-VAHNT or bohn-vee-VAHN\ • (noun)
: a person having cultivated, refined, and sociable tastes especially in respect to food and drink

Did you know?
Fans of fine French wine and cuisine won't be surprised to hear that the French language gave us a number of words for those who enjoy good living and good eating. "Gourmet," "gourmand," and "gastronome" come from French, as does "bon vivant." In the late 17th century, English speakers borrowed this French phrase, which literally means "good liver." No, we don't mean "liver," as in that iron-rich food your mother made you eat. We mean "liver," as in "one who lives"—in this case, "one who lives well."

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

Posted by Dr. Mobius (Member # 3614) on :

<---bonvivantly challenged.

Posted by celia60 (Member # 2039) on :

I'm hosting a group of bon vivants this weekend. I sure hope my kitchen is up to their standards.

Bob, stop it! This is the second time in a month one of your posts has made me look over my shoulder to see if you were there. I just finished reading an email about todays word. The other, I was listening to Cecelia when you posted part of it. Get out of my head!

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Is a bon bon vivant someone who really likes their candy?

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Nope. It's someone who is so refined that they easily shame all those run-of-a-mill gourmands like Julia Childs and Alice Waters.

BTW:

You know your a bon vivant if...

... you refuse to drink mineral water unless it's drawn from a specific artesian well located deep in the Carpathian mountains

... you find the use of black truffle oil in risotto or other pasta dishes to be prosiac

... you flirted with, enjoyed and then repudiated quinine

... you enjoy the lowbrow humor of 'Frasier'

... you refuse to eat California rolls as a matter of principle

... you fry everything in ghee

... you like to shock your friends at parties by devouring most of the centerpiece

... one word: gamey

... are always sticking your nose up at everybody and in everything

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

That should be 'prosaic' not 'prosiac' ---I was trying to figure out how to fit in an item about celeriac and got my endings confused.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 4 is:

emulate • \EM-yuh-layt\ • (verb)
: to strive to equal or excel : imitate

Did you know?
If imitation really is "the sincerest flattery," in the words of Charles Caleb Colton, then past speakers of English clearly had a great admiration for the Latin language. The verb "emulate" joined the ranks of Latin-derived English terms in 1582. It comes from "aemulus," a Latin term for "rivaling" or "envious." Around the same time came the adjectives "emulate" and "emulous," meaning "striving to emulate" or sometimes "jealous." But "emulous" is rare these days, and the adjective "emulate" is obsolete. The latter had a brief moment of glory, however, when the unmatchable Shakespeare used it in Hamlet:

Our last king,
Whose image even but now appear'd to us,
Was, as you know, by Fortinbras of Norway,
Thereto prick'd on by a most emulate pride,
Dar'd to the combat. . . .

From Merriam-Webster's® online Word of the Day

As for prosiac, isn't that a antidepressant for robots?

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 5 is:

umpteen • \UMP-teen\ • (adjective)
: very many : indefinitely numerous

Did you know?
"I'll go to bed and I'll not get up for umpty-eleven months." You know the feeling. The speaker here is war-weary Bill, a character in Patrick MacGill's 1917 novel The Great Push. His "umpty" originated in the wee years of the 20th century and stood for an indefinite number, generally largish. (It was probably created by analogy to actual numbers such as "twenty.") Soon, there followed "umpteen," analogous to the numbers ending with "teen." "Umpteen" is indefinite and always large -- so is the adjective "umpteenth." We only occasionally use "umpty" these days (and even more rarely "umptieth"), but you're bound to hear or read "umpteen" and "umpteenth" any number of times.

Posted by GhostofDobie (Member # 3738) on :

For the umpteenth time, I just want to say how wonderful it is to have the Word-Of-The-Day reply #1000!

Oh well. Patrick beat me to it. I guess I just have to fade away...

:sniff:

[This message has been edited by GhostofDobie (edited July 05, 2002).]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Patrick!!!!
We were saving it for Dobie.

Well... someone had to get it.

Congrats on the 1000th post.

PS: Don't anyone go back and delete any posts -- I suspect that's what messes up threads (or one of the things). We'd like to keep this one going awhile longer if we can.

Patrick wins!

[This message has been edited by Bob_Scopatz (edited July 05, 2002).]

Posted by Patrick (Member # 2050) on :

**ignores Bob's plea, steps aside to let Dobie win, while welcoming him back**

"I'm always happy to let Dobie win, hopefully he'll stick around," Pat says for the umpteenth time.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

I'm still waiting for my umpteenth birthday party to happen. Where are all my umpteenth presents?

Do candles come in umpteenth packs?

Posted by Dr. Mobius (Member # 3614) on :

Jeez, you slackers, you let this fall to the 3rd page.

kibitzer • \KIH-bit-ser\ • (noun)
: one who looks on and often offers unwanted advice or comment especially at a card game; broadly : one who offers opinions

Example sentence:
Sue's uncle was an inveterate kibitzer, and worse, he usually offered bad advice.

Did you know?
The Yiddish language has given English some particularly piquant terms over the years, and "kibitzer" is one such term. "Kibitzer," spelled "kibitser" in Yiddish, came to that language from the German word "kiebitzen," meaning "to look on (at cards)." "Kiebitzen" may or may not be derived from a German word for "lapwing," a type of bird noted for its shrill and raucous cry. (We can speculate that the bird's cry reminded people of the shrill commentary of onlookers at card games.) The word became more popular and widespread after the 1929 play The Kibitzer came out. Although "kibitzer" usually implies some sort of meddling, there is a respectable body of evidence for the word simply meaning "spectator," regardless of whether the onlooker interferes in the action.

Hm...I wonder who that could be. Looks like a picked a good day to revive this.

Posted by Dr. Mobius (Member # 3614) on :

<---kibitzer

Posted by Khavanon (Member # 929) on :

Kitzhaber, the name of Oregon's current governer.

Posted by Frisco (Member # 3765) on :

:bump:

[This message has been edited by Frisco (edited September 28, 2002).]

Posted by BYuCnslr (Member # 1857) on :

i want more words!

Dobie! get back to work! or else someone else will ahve to take your job!!!
Satyagraha

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for October 7 is:

homily • \HAH-muh-lee\ • (noun)
1 : a usually short sermon
*2 : a lecture or discourse on a moral theme
3 : an inspirational catchphrase; also : platitude

Did you know?
Gather around for the history of "homily." The story starts with ancient Greek "homilos," meaning "crowd, assembly." Greeks used "homilos" to create the verb "homilein" ("to talk with" or "to make a speech"), as well as the noun "homilia" ("conversation"). Latin speakers borrowed "homilia," then passed it on to Middle French. By the time it crossed into Middle English, the spelling had shifted to "omelie," but by the 14th century the term had regained its "h" and added the "y" of the modern spelling.

From Webster online

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for October 8 is:

manqué • \mahn-KAY\ • (adjective)
: short of or frustrated in the fulfillment of one's aspirations or talents -- used postpositively

Did you know?
The etymology of "manqué" is likely to vex left-handers. English speakers picked up "manqué" directly from French more than two centuries ago, and it ultimately comes from Latin "manco," meaning "having either hand crippled." But in between the Latin and French portions of this word's history came the Italian word "manco," which means both "lacking" and "left-handed." Lefties may be further displeased to learn that "manqué" isn't the only English word with a history that links left-handedness with something undesirable. For example, the word "awkward" comes from "awke," a Middle English word meaning both "turned the wrong way" and "left-handed." And the noun "gawk" ("a clumsy stupid person") probably comes from an English dialect "gawk" meaning "left-handed."

From Webster online

Posted by James Tiberius Kirk (Member # 2832) on :

.:.::bump::.:.

Posted by Vampyr1818 (Member # 4592) on :

nice word, bump. Complex in its simplicity and Simple in its complexity.

Posted by Icarus (Member # 3162) on :

I've had this manqué sense that perhaps I'm not as musically talented as I always thought I was.

um, what does "postpositively" mean?

I feel manqué about my role at Hatrack whenever Bob posts anything, but I'm unwilling to register for the m-w word of the day. Anybody else want to revive this thread?

Posted by Caleb Varns (Member # 946) on :

No.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for April 29 is:

lavation • \lay-VAY-shun\ • noun
: the act or an instance of washing or cleansing

Did you know?
It sounds logical that you would perform a "lavation" in a "lavatory," doesn't it? And it is logical: both these words come from the Latin "lavare," meaning, appropriately, "to wash." English picked up a few other words from this root as well. In medicine, the therapeutic washing out of an organ is "lavage." There is also "lavabo" (in Latin, literally, "I shall wash") which in English can refer to a ceremony at Mass in which the celebrant washes his hands, to the basin used in this religious ceremony, or to other kinds of basins. Even the word "lavish," via a Middle French word for a downpour of rain, comes to us from "lavare."

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Caleb Varns (Member # 946) on :

*twitches*

*obsessively washes hands, follows lines in the wood grain*

Posted by Icarus (Member # 3162) on :

I thought it was VD, but it was really just inadequate lavation.

Posted by Caleb Varns (Member # 946) on :

In an airplane, I do not recommend elevated lavation in what is essentially a levitating lavatory. The consequences can certainly outweigh the benefits.

Posted by Posable_Man (Member # 5105) on :

Bob has a drinking problem -- his every libation becomes a lavation.

Posted by Frisco (Member # 3765) on :

I'm wondering what was said in my last post that made me edit it two and a half months later...

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for April 30 is:

1 : having discrete markings of different colors
2 : varied

Did you know?
"Variegated" has been adding color to our language since
the mid-17th century. It has been used in botany to describe the
presence of two or more colors in the leaves, petals, or other
parts of plants, and it also appears in the names of some
animals ("variegated cutworm"). It can be used by the general
speaker to refer to anything marked with different colors ("a
variegated silk robe") or to things that are simply various and
diverse ("a variegated collection"). "Variegated" has a variety
of relatives in English -- it's ultimately derived from the
Latin root "varius," meaning "varied," which also gave
us "vary," "various," and "variety."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

"No honey, I said I wanted to live in a 'gated' community, not a 'variegated' community."

[ April 30, 2003, 08:37 AM: Message edited by: Bob_Scopatz ]

Posted by Caleb Varns (Member # 946) on :

Vary a gate by adding a lock.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 1 is:

Beltane \BEL-tayn\ noun
: the Celtic May Day festival

Did you know?
To the ancient Celts, May Day was a critical time when the
boundaries between the human and supernatural worlds were
removed and people needed to take special measures to protect
themselves against enchantments. The Beltane fire festival
originated in a spring ritual in which cattle were herded
between two huge bonfires to protect them from evil and disease.
Perhaps the earliest mention of Beltane (then
spelled "belltaine") appears in an Old Irish dictionary commonly
attributed to Cormac, a king and bishop who lived in Cashel,
Ireland, toward the end of the first millennium. The "Beltane"
spelling entered English in the 15th century by way of Scottish
Gaelic.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

In Boston, Beltane coincides with a rapid increase in methane. Could be all the beans.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 2 is:

kismet \KIZ-met\ noun, often capitalized
: fate

Did you know?
Is it your fate to tie macrame while drinking coffee and
eating sherbet in a minaret? That would be an unusual destiny,
but if it turns out to be your kismet, you will owe much to
Turkish and Arabic. We borrowed "kismet" from Turkish in the
1800s, but it ultimately derives from the Arabic "qismah,"
meaning "portion" or "lot." Several other terms in our bizarre
opening question (namely, "macrame," "coffee," "sherbet,"
and "minaret") have roots in those languages too. In the case
of "macrame" and "minaret," there is a little French influence
as well. "Coffee" and "macrame" also have Italian relations,
and "sherbet" has an ancestor in a Persian name for a type of
cold drink.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

When kizmet kaz, the world ended. For them anyway.

Posted by Posable_Man (Member # 5105) on :

I'm utterly convinced that it was kizmet when Posable_Girl came into my life here at Hatrack. Either that, or someone's pulling my leg, again. No! Not again! I only have one foot left!!! Ouch! Stop it!

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 3 is:

pullulate \PUL-yuh-layt (the first syllable rhymes
with "dull," not with "bull")\ verb
1 a : germinate, sprout b : to breed or produce freely
2 : swarm, teem

Example sentence:
The coastal resort town is quiet now, but with summer
approaching it will soon be pullulating with tourists.

Did you know?
To remember the history of "pullulate," think chickens.
This may sound like odd advice, but it makes sense if you know
that "pullulate" traces ultimately to the Latin noun "pullus,"
which means not only "sprout," but also "young of an animal"
and, specifically, "chick." "Pullus" is also an ancestor
of "pullet" ("young hen"), "poult" (meaning "young fowl" and
especially "young turkey"), and even "poultry" ("domesticated
fowl"). At first "pullulate" referred to sprouting, budding, and
breeding around the farm; only later did it gain its "swarm"
sense.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Pixie (Member # 4043) on :

Can you say 'pullulate' fives times fast?

Actual sentence... Well, my mind is pullulating with ideas for sentences but none seem quite good enough.

Posted by Icarus (Member # 3162) on :

My students pollulate second-rate work faster than I can grade it.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 5 is:

: of, relating to, or resembling a tempest :
turbulent, stormy

Did you know?
Time is sometimes marked in seasons, and seasons are
associated with the weather. This explains how "tempus," the
Latin word for "time" could have given rise to an English
adjective for things turbulent and stormy. "Tempus" is the root
behind the Old Latin "tempestus," meaning "season," and the Late
Latin "tempestuosus," the direct ancestor of "tempestuous." As
you might expect, "tempus" is also the root of the
noun "tempest"; it probably played a role in the history
of "temper" as well, but that connection isn't as definite.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Gone With the Wind is the story of a tempestuous time in America's history, as reflected in the lives of a blow-hard and his stormy consort. Whew!

Posted by jehovoid (Member # 2014) on :

We are such stuff as dreams are made on.

Posted by Shan (Member # 4550) on :

Blow hard!

Stormy consort!

*Shan leaves to cry mightily into her - oops, no Rhett's - hankie, before coming back to stomp her feet, shake her golden locks and declare "I'll think about it tomorrow - after all, tomorrow IS another day" before wandering off singing in a little girl voice "Tomorrow, tomorrow, I luv ya, tomorrow - you're only a day away . . . OHHHHHHHH, tomorrow . . . *

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 6 is:

temporize \TEM-puh-ryze\ verb
1 : to act to suit the time or occasion : yield to current
or dominant opinion : compromise
2 : to draw out discussions or negotiations so as to gain
time

Did you know?
"Temporize" comes from the Medieval Latin
verb "temporizare" ("to pass the time"), which itself comes from
the Latin noun "tempus," meaning "time." ("Tempus" is also the
root of such words as "tempo," "contemporary," and "temporal.")
If you need to buy some time, you might resort to temporizing --
but you probably won't win admiration for doing so. "Temporize"
can have a somewhat negative connotation. For instance, a
political leader faced with a difficult issue might temporize by
talking vaguely about possible solutions without actually doing
anything. The point of such temporizing is to avoid taking
definite -- and possibly unpopular -- action, in hopes that the
problem will somehow go away. But the effect is often just to
make matters worse.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 7 is:

: of the color wine : dark red

Did you know?
The first recorded evidence of "vinaceous" in English dates
from 1688, about the time of the accession of Mary II. If ever
the queen used "vinaceous," she was probably in the confines of
her landscaped garden, admiring the vinaceous shades of petals
or looking indifferently at the vinaceous cap of a mushroom;
since its beginning, "vinaceous" has flourished in the earthy
lexicon of horticulture and mycology. It has also taken flight
in the ornithological world as a descriptive word for the unique
dark-red coloring of some birds, like the vinaceous amazon or
vinaceous rosefinch. You probably won't encounter these exotic
birds while enjoying the spring weather in your neighborhood,
but you might see someone tossing a vinaceous Frisbee or jogging
by in a vinaceous T-shirt .

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Vampyr1818 (Member # 4592) on :

so this is how he gets all those posts... (this too)

Posted by Dobbie (Member # 3881) on :

So who's jack?

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Vinaceous blood spewed from the pulsing mass that once was the body of my best friend, Toby.

Posted by Shan (Member # 4550) on :

do you suppose there's any connection between vivacious and vinaceous?

Posted by Tacitus (Member # 5025) on :

As in bloody lively?

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 8 is:

insouciance \in-SOO-see-unss\ noun
: lighthearted unconcern : nonchalance

Did you know?
Don't worry -- be insouciant. Perhaps your mind will
rest easier if we explain that English speakers
learned "insouciance" from the French in the 1700s (and the
adjective "insouciant" has been part of our language since the
1800s). The French garnered their term from Latin; its most
immediate ancestor was the verb "sollicitare" (meaning "to
disturb"), which in turn traces to "sollicitus," the Latin word
for "anxious." If it seems to you that "sollicitus" looks a lot
like some other English words you've seen, you're right. That
root also gave us "solicit" (which now means "to entreat" but
which was once used to mean "to fill with concern or
anxiety"), "solicitude" (meaning "uneasiness of mind"),
and "solicitous" ("showing or expressing concern").

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 9 is:

interdigitate \in-ter-DIH-juh-tayt\ verb
: to become interlocked like the fingers of folded hands

Did you know?
It probably won't surprise you to learn
that "interdigitate" comes from the prefix "inter-," as
in "interlock," and the Latin word "digitus,"
meaning "finger." "Digitus" also gave us "digit," which is used
in English today to refer to (among other things) the finger or
toe of any animal. "Interdigitate" usually suggests an
interlocking of things with fingerlike projections, such as
muscle fibers or the teeth of an old-fashioned bear trap. The
word can also be used figuratively to imply a smooth
interweaving of disparate things, such as the blending of two
cultures within a shared region.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 10 is:

prestidigitation \press-tuh-dih-juh-TAY-shun\ noun
: sleight of hand, legerdemain

Did you know?
The secret to performing magic tricks is all in the hands --
or at least, that's what is suggested by the etymologies
of "prestidigitation" and its two synonyms "legerdemain"
and "sleight of hand." The French word "preste" (from
Italian "presto") means "quick" or "nimble," and the Latin
word "digitus" means "finger." Put them together and
-- presto! -- you've got "prestidigitation."
Similarly, "legerdemain" was conjured up from the French
phrase "leger de main," which translates to
"light of hand." The third term, "sleight of hand," involves the
least etymological hocus-pocus; it simply joins "hand"
with "sleight," meaning "dexterity."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 11 is:

1 a : yielding something abundantly b : plentiful in number
2 a : full of thought, information, or matter b : profuse
or exuberant in words, expression, or style
3 : present in large quantity : taking place on a large
scale : lavish, abundant

Did you know?
"Copious" derives from Latin "copia" ("abundance"), which
in turn combines the prefix "co-" and "ops"
("wealth"). "Copious" and "opulent" (also from "ops"), along
with "ample," "plentiful," and "abundant," all mean "more than
sufficient." "Ample" implies a generous sufficiency to satisfy a
particular requirement ("ample proof"). "Copious" puts emphasis
upon largeness of supply more than on fullness or richness
("copious toasts to the bride and groom"). "Plentiful" implies a
rich, and usually more than sufficient, supply ("a plentiful
supply of textbooks"). "Abundant" suggests a greater or richer
supply than "plentiful" does ("moved by the abundant offers to
help"). But use "opulent" when the supply is both abundant and
infused with a richness that allows an extra measure of
gratification ("the opulent blossoms of the cherry trees").

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by jack (Member # 2083) on :

My posts may not be copious, but the replies this thread are.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The closet monster drooled a copious volume of saliva as he waited for little Timmy to settle down for the night.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

peregrination \peh-ruh-gruh-NAY-shun\ noun

: an excursion especially on foot or to a foreign country : journey

Did you know?
We begin our narrative of the linguistic travels of "peregrination" with the Latin root "peregrinus," which means "foreign" or "foreigner." That root also gave us the words "pilgrim" and "peregrine," the latter of which once meant "alien" but is now used as an adjective meaning "tending to wander" and a noun naming a kind of falcon. (The peregrine falcon is so named because it was traditionally captured during its first flight — or pilgrimage — from the nest.) From "peregrinus" we travel to the Latin verb "peregrinari" ("to travel in foreign lands") and its past participle "peregrinatus." Our final destination is the adoption into English in the 16th century of both "peregrination" and the verb "peregrinate" ("to travel especially on foot" or "to traverse").

(c) Merriam Webster 2003

Posted by Sopwith (Member # 4640) on :

The peregrination began after Tim's car was stolen in Tijuana.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 15 is:

1 : calm, peaceful
2 : happy, golden
3 : prosperous, affluent

Did you know?
According to Greek mythology, Alkyone, the daughter of the god of the winds, became so distraught when she learned that her husband had been killed in a shipwreck that she threw herself into the sea and was changed into a kingfisher. As a result, ancient Greeks called such birds "alkyon" or "halkyon." The legend also says that such birds built floating nests on the sea, where they so charmed the wind god that he created a period of unusual calm that lasted until the birds' eggs hatched. This legend prompted people to use "halcyon" both as a noun naming a genus of kingfisher and as an adjective meaning either "of or relating to the kingfisher or its nesting period" or "calm."

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 16 is:

popinjay \PAH-pin-jay\ noun
: a strutting supercilious person

Did you know?
Popinjays and parrots are birds of a feather,
etymologically speaking. "Popinjay" was borrowed from a Middle
French word for "parrot" back in the 1500s, when parrots were
rare and were considered exotic. At that time, it was quite a
compliment to be called a "popinjay" after such a beautiful
bird. But as parrots became more commonplace, their gaudy
plumage and vulgar mimicry helped "popinjay" develop the
pejorative sense we use today.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 17 is:

1 : having power to compel or constrain
2 a : appealing forcibly to the mind or reason :
convincing b : pertinent, relevant

Did you know?
"Trained, knowledgeable agents make cogent
suggestions . . . that make sense to customers." It makes sense
for us to include that comment from the president of a direct
marketing consulting company because it provides such a nice
opportunity to point out the etymological relationship between
the words "cogent" and "agent." "Agent" derives from the Latin
verb "agere," which means "to drive," "to lead," or "to act."
Adding the prefix "co-" to "agere" gave Latin "cogere," a word
that literally means "to drive together"; that ancient term
ultimately gave English "cogent." Something that is cogent
figuratively pulls together thoughts and ideas, and the cogency
of an argument depends on a driving intellectual force behind it.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 18 is:

1 : recklessly extravagant
2 : characterized by wasteful expenditure : lavish
3 : yielding abundantly : luxuriant -- often used with of

Did you know?
Which of these words do you think share the same Latin root
as "prodigal"?

active agenda exact chasten react transact

The root in question is "agere," Latin for "to drive," "to
lead," "to act," or "to do." Each of the words above came to
English by a different route, but all include the
productive "agere" among their ancestors. "Prodigal" is
from "agere" plus the prefix "prod-," which means "forth." That
combination rendered the Latin verb "prodigere," meaning "to
drive away" or "to squander," and the Latin
adjective "prodigus," from which we derived our
adjective "prodigal." The past participle of "agere" is "actus"--
thus "agere" is the parent of many words that contain "act."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 19 is:

nonplus \nahn-PLUSS\ verb
: to cause to be at a loss as to what to say, think, or
do : perplex

Did you know?
Does "nonplus" perplex you? You aren't alone. Some people
believe the "non" in "nonplus" means "not" and assume that to
be "nonplussed" is to be calm and poised when just the opposite
is true. If you are among the baffled, the word's history may
clarify things. In Latin, "non plus" means "no more."
When "nonplus" debuted in English in the 16th century, it was
used as a noun synonymous with "quandary." Someone brought to a
nonplus had reached an impasse in an argument and could say no
more. Within 10 years of the first known use of the noun, people
began using "nonplus" as a verb, and today it is often used in
participial form (as in "Joellen's nasty remark left us utterly
nonplussed").

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 20 is:

volition \voh-LIH-shun\ noun
1 : an act of making a choice or decision; also : a choice
2 : the power of choosing or determining : will

Did you know?
"Volition" ultimately derives from the Latin verb "velle,"
meaning "to will" or "to wish." English speakers borrowed the
term from French in the 17th century, using it at first to
mean "an act of choosing." Its earliest known English use
appeared in Thomas Jackson's 1615 _Commentaries upon the
Apostle's Creed_: "That such acts, again, as they appropriate to
the will, and call volitions, are essentially and formally
intellections, is most evident." The second sense
of "volition," meaning "the power to choose," had developed by
the mid-18th century.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

It is not the volition that matters -- not the long dissembling process punctuated by several winks and a strange grin -- but the aftereffects, the elimination of cogent possibilities, the will to nonplus, the forced shudder on to a new, prodigal track.

[Profligate would be better than prodigal, but that was the word of the day back on page whatever]

[ May 20, 2003, 04:23 PM: Message edited by: Zalmoxis ]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

10 points for Zal!!!

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Thanks, Bob.

In what has to be an astounding coincidence, that sentence is actually the opening line of my latest magnum opus "Love in the Time of Disintegrating Corporate Cultures."

Copy, paste, and bam! -- ten points for Zal.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 21 is:

pugilism \PYOO-juh-lih-zum\ noun
: boxing

Did you know?
The practice of fighting for sport was in place in a number
of Mediterranean civilizations by 1500 B.C. (and recent evidence
suggests that it may have flourished in parts of eastern Africa
before that). By the 7th century B.C., boxing had become a
staple of the Olympic Games in Greece. Soon afterward, the
Romans picked up the sport and introduced the word "pugil" (a
noun related to the Latin "pugnus," meaning "fist") to refer to
a boxer. Boxing faded out with the decline of the Roman Empire,
but resurged in popularity in the18th century. By the
1790s, "pugilist" and "pugilism" were firmly entrenched in the
English lexicon.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

As one of the preeminent and highly publicized supporters of this oldest of sports it is my pleasure and my duty to disabuse the notions of the naive naysayers who say the practice of pugilism has somehow declined in this 21st of all centuries. I say the evidence is to the contrary. Never have there been so many fine and talented gentlemen at so many weight classes. I predict that the battles that we shall bring to the viewing public over the next few years will be epic and entertaining.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 22 is:

respite \RES-pit\ noun
1 : a period of temporary delay; especially : reprieve
2 : an interval of rest or relief

Did you know?
Originally, beginning in the late 13th century, a respite
was a delay or extension asked for or granted for a specific
reason -- to give someone time to deliberate on a proposal, for
example. Such a respite offered an opportunity for the kind of
consideration inherent in the word's etymology. "Respite" traces
from the Latin term "respectus," which comes from a verb
meaning, both literally and figuratively, "to turn around to
look at" or "to regard." By the 14th century, we had
granted "respite" the sense we use most often today -- "a
welcome break."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 23 is:

cockalorum \kah-kuh-LOR-um\ noun
1: a boastful and self-important person
2 : boastful talk

Did you know?
The image of a rooster (a.k.a. cock) strutting confidently
across the barnyard or belting out triumphant crow has long been
associated with brash self-confidence. It's an association that
has left quite a mark on the English language, giving us "crow"
("to brag"),"cock" ("a self-important person"), and "cocky"
("overconfident"), just to name a few. "Cockalorum" (which may
have derived from the obsolete Flemish word "kockeloeren,"
meaning "to crow") is another example. It dates back to 1715
when it was used to describe the Marquis of Huntly -- son of the
Duke of Gordon, a Celtic Highlander chief who was himself known
as the "Cock of the North." Presumably, the Marquis was not
exactly known for his humility!

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

"Will I ever find respite? Am I doomed to forever hear the inance chatterings of this cagey cockalarum? Will his acerbic, ill-informed pronouncements ever cease to pound into my ear and rattle around my head, cluttering my aching, overstuffed mind?"

"Dude. Drop the theatrics. If you don't want to listen to talk radio, pop in a CD. There's a whole stack of them in the glove compartment."

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

LOL

Posted by blacwolve (Member # 2972) on :

This thread just saved my english grade.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 25 is:

con amore \kahn-uh-MOR-ee\ adverb
1 : with love, devotion, or zest
2 : in a tender manner -- used as a direction in music

Did you know?
"No matter what the object is, whether business, pleasures,
or the fine arts; whoever pursues them to any purpose must do so
con amore." Wise words -- and the 18th-century Englishman who
wrote them under the pseudonym Sir Thomas Fitzosborne may have
been drawing on his own experience. At the time those words were
written (around 1740), the author, whose real name was William
Melmoth, had recently abandoned the practice of law to pursue
his interest in writing and classical scholarship, which were
apparently his true loves. In any case, by making use of "con
amore," a term borrowed from Italian, Melmoth gave us the first
known use of the word in English prose.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 26 is:

epitaph \EP-uh-taf\ noun
1 : an inscription on or at a tomb or a grave in memory
of the one buried there
2 : a brief statement commemorating or epitomizing a
deceased person or something past

Did you know?
"And were an epitaph to be my story / I'd have a short
one ready for my own. / I would have written of me on my
stone: / I had a lover's quarrel with the world." That's what
Robert Frost had to say about epitaphs in _The Lesson for Today_
(1942). We can't hope to wax so elegantly poetic, but if we were
to write an epitaph for the word "epitaph," it might go
something like this: "A classical upbringing and a French fling
framed its days, before it gave English a word for 'final
praise.'" It's a little premature ("epitaph" is alive and well
in Modern English), but it's etymologically accurate. English
acquired "epitaph" from Middle French, which garnered it from
the Latin word for "funeral oration"; the Latin term ultimately
traces to the Greek "taphos," meaning "tomb" or "funeral."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Pixie (Member # 4043) on :

I read the epitaph on my aunt's grave the other day and the funny/sad thing is, it didn't sound a bit like the aunt I knew.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 27 is:

: antecedent, anticipatory

Did you know?
It would be quite convenient to know where the
word "prevenient" comes from. Can you find two relatives
of "prevenient" in that sentence? You probably guessed
that "convenient" is a cousin; it derives from the Latin
verb "convenire," meaning "to come together" or "to be
suitable," which is itself from "venire," meaning "to
come." "Prevenient," which first appeared in English in the mid-
1600s, comes to us from the Latin "praevenire" ("to come before,
to precede"), which is also from "venire." The third (albeit
distant) relative of "prevenient" in the opening sentence
is "come"; it shares an ancient ancestor with "venire."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 28 is:

cacography \kak-AH-gruh-fee\ noun
*1 : bad spelling
2 : bad handwriting

Example sentence:
"I always wanted to be a contestant in the National
Spelling Bee," said Pat, "but an unfortunate tendency to
cacography prevented me from qualifying."

Did you know?
In its earliest use in the 16th century, "cacography"
meant not "incorrect spelling" but "a bad system of spelling."
Today people worry about misspelling words, but back then there
was little need for such concern. English spelling was far from
standardized; people spelled words any way that made sense to
them. Not every one was happy with such laxity, however, and
over the coming centuries spelling reformers pressed for
regularization. Some reformers thought spelling should reflect
the etymological background of words; others thought words
should be spelled the way they sound. And of course, everyone
believed his or her own way of spelling was the best! Our
present inconsistent system was arrived at over time.
Today "cacography" usually suggests deviation from the
established standards.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

In what must be one of the most prevenient example of cacography in human history, archeaologists have recently discovered communications between two young Greek citizens. Classics scholars say that the cacographic nature of the letters means that they won't be fully translated for at least 5 or 6 years. They have, however, determined that the authors of the messages appear to be named Maethea and Hobbeseus.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 29 is:

: relating to or concerned with earning a living -- used
pejoratively; also : utilitarian, practical

Example sentence:
Each summer, countless college students set aside their
books and turn to more banausic tasks, such as waiting tables,
to earn tuition and spending money for the coming year.

Did you know?
The ancient Greeks held intellectual pursuits in the
highest esteem, and they considered ideal a leisurely life of
contemplation. A large population of slaves enabled many Greek
citizens to adopt that preferred lifestyle. Those who had others
to do the heavy lifting for them tended to regard professional
labor with contempt. Their prejudice against the need to toil to
earn a living is reflected in the Greek adjective "banausikos"
(the root of "banausic"), which not only means "of an artisan"
and "nonintellectual," but also "vulgar."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for May 31 is:

stultify \STUL-tuh-fye\ verb
1 : to cause to appear stupid, foolish, or absurdly
illogical
2 : to impair, invalidate, or make ineffective : negate
3 : to have a dulling effect on

Did you know?
Comedy is sometimes generated by stupid or absurd behavior,
but there is nothing especially funny about the original usage
of "stultify." In the mid-1700s, it was first used in legal
contexts with the meaning "to allege or prove (oneself or
another) to be of unsound mind so that the performance of some
act may be avoided." The word was then adapted to refer to the
process of making someone appear incompetent. Over
time, "stultify" was generalized to cover any process that could
make someone or something dull or ineffective.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 1 is:

brainiac \BRAY-nee-ack\ noun
: a person characterized by unusual brainpower

Did you know?
Happy Birthday to the Man of Steel! The Superman Action
Comics series was launched on June 1, 1938. In honor of the
anniversary, we've chosen to feature "brainiac." Why? Because --
as Superman fans know -- "Brainiac" was the superintelligent
villain in the comic-book series and its spin-offs. You don't
need x-ray vision to see the connection here. Etymologists are
pretty sure Superman's brainy adversary was the inspiration for
our modern term "brainiac."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Kayla (Member # 2403) on :

The brainiac managed to stultify most people he met.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Despite the beige walls, the low-protein gruel, the hard labour, the gray smocks, and the repetitive chants, I have been able to stultify the creativity of my adherents. Well, I guess were about to go from a peace-loving, waiting-for-the-nice-aliens-to-come cult to a fiery, apocalyptic, stockpile ammunition one.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 4 is:

hew \HYOO\ verb
1 : to cut or fell with blows (as of an ax)
2 : to give shape to with or as if with an ax
*3 : to conform, adhere

Example sentence:
It was simpler and cheaper to hew to tradition when it came
to a wedding dress, Sylvia found out, and finally she gave up on
the pale green satin gown she'd dreamed of.

Did you know?
"Hew" is a strong, simple word of Anglo-Saxon descent. It
can suggest actual ax-wielding, or it can be figurative: "If...
our ambition hews and shapes [our] new relations, their virtue
escapes, as strawberries lose their flavor in garden-beds"
(Ralph Waldo Emerson). It's easy to see how the
figurative "shape" sense of "hew" developed from the literal
hacking sense, but what does chopping have to do with adhering
and conforming? That sense first appeared in the late 1800s in
the phrase "hew to the line." The "hew line" is a line marked
along the length of a log indicating where to chop in order to
shape a beam. "Hewing to the line," literally, is cutting along
the mark -- adhering to it -- until the side of the log is
squared.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.
(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Try as he might Hugh McDonough could not force his banausic soul to hew to his wife's taste in hues, a situation that caused no small amount of difficulties in their domestic situation, especially when she painted his den, the last refuge of the dark, dank, rough-hewn [bonus!] and masculine, a lovely shade of sea-foam green on it's way to becoming turquoise.

----

Any GreNMEtics who regularly read this thread are going to have a definite edge in the guess-the-hack contest when my submission comes up.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 5 is:

*1 a : resembling a worm in form or motion b : vermiculate

2 : of, relating to, or caused by worms

Example sentence:
Viewed from above, the stream's vermicular course undulated
across the landscape, winding and twisting like a living thing.

Did you know?
What does the word "vermicular" have in common with the
pasta on your plate? If you're eating vermicelli (a spaghetti-
like pasta made in long thin strings) the answer is "vermis," a
Latin noun meaning "worm." If you dig deep enough, you'll find
that "vermis" is the root underlying not only "vermicular"
and "vermicelli," but also "vermiculate" (which can mean
either "full of worms" or "tortuous") and even "worm" itself.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

There it was -- floating gently in the water, nudging against the grate, bloated and vermicular, beautiful in a doggy, corpsey kind of way.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Aw, that was beautiful, man!

<sniff>

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 6 is:

Dunkirk \DUN-kerk\ noun
1 : a retreat to avoid total defeat
*2 : a crisis situation that requires a desperate last
effort to forestall certain failure

Example sentence:
"In 1981, [President Ronald] Reagan said the country faced
an 'economic Dunkirk' if tax rates weren't slashed." (Fred
Barnes, _The Weekly Standard_, April 9, 2001)

Did you know?
"Dunkirk" is the English spelling of the name of the
French town of Dunkerque, which is located on the Dover Strait
near the Belgian border. In 1940, Dunkerque was the scene of a
massive evacuation of Allied forces to England after the fall of
France to Germany during World War II. Death seemed certain for
the 300,000 soldiers who had retreated to Dunkerque until
hundreds of naval and civilian vessels arrived to ferry them to
safety. The impact of the event was so great that within a
year "Dunkirk" was being used for any military retreat carried
out to avoid total defeat. Soon after, the word was extended
beyond the military sphere and it is now used for any crisis
that needs a miracle to save the day.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Somewhere, back inside his alcohol-addled, Details-oriented, J. Crew mind Chad was secretely hoping to meet his own personal Dunkirk -- to test the limits of his masculinity in some shameful way and then bow ungracefully out of the game, dignity untact -- and for that reason he had come to New Orleans, come to Mardis Gras, come to Bourbon St., to revel and drink and maybe, just maybe, stumble into a role on an episode of COPS, or barring that, Worlds Wildest Police Videos.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The citizens of Dunkirk, realizing that their town's reputation was now blighted by it's role in WW II, have reached a marketing Dunkirk, of sorts, and have cancelled a recent order for over 1 million "You are Now Leaving Dunkirk" keychains.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 7 is:

flivver \FLIH-ver\ noun
: a small cheap usually old automobile

Example sentence:
Uncle Edward refuses to trade in his beloved flivver
for a newer car even though he could easily afford to do so.

Did you know?
In 1908, Henry Ford changed the world with the Model T,
the first affordable automobile. English speakers quickly coined
an array of colorful terms for the Model T and the other
relatively inexpensive cars that followed it. No one is sure why
cheap cars came to be called "flivvers," but we do know that in
the early 1900s that colorful term was also used as a slang verb
meaning "to fail," as in "If this film flivvers, I'll be in
trouble." In _Flappers 2 Rappers: American Youth Slang_, author
Tom Dalzell lists "flivver" (which made its print debut in 1910,
just two years after the Model T) among a number of terms
applied to "the humble Ford." Others included "bone
crusher," "bouncing Betty," "Henry's go-cart," "puddle
jumper," "Spirit of Detroit," and "Tin Lizzie."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 8 is:

jettison \JEH-tuh-sun\ verb
1 : to throw (goods) overboard to lighten a ship or
aircraft in distress

Example sentence:
When they realized how much money and work a big, formal
wedding would require, Beth and Mike jettisoned the idea and
planned a small, quiet ceremony instead.

Did you know?
"Jettison" comes via Anglo-French from the Old
French "getaison," meaning "action of throwing," and ultimately
from the Latin verb "jactare," meaning "to throw." The
noun "jettison" ("a voluntary sacrifice of cargo to lighten a
ship's load in time of distress") entered English in the 15th
century; the verb has been with us since the 19th century. The
noun is also the source of the word "jetsam" ("jettisoned
goods"), which is often paired with "flotsam"("floating
wreckage"). These days you don't have to be on a sinking ship to
jettison something. In addition to literally "throwing
overboard," "jettison" means simply "to get rid of." You might
jettison some old magazines that are cluttering your house. Or
you might make plans, but jettison them at the last minute.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The old flivver just wasn't going to make it up the steep grade, so we had to jettison grandma.

Posted by Teshi (Member # 5024) on :

So that's where flotsam and jetsam comes from... (ooohhhhh...)

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 9 is:

gambol \GAM-bul\ verb
: to skip about in play : frisk, frolic

Example sentence:
"The dawn of spring also brings out animals, and, closest
to home, rabbits gambol and frolic nearby...." (Frank Curcio,
[Bridgewater, NJ] _Courier News_, April 16, 2003)

Did you know?
In Middle French, the noun "gambade" referred to the
frisky spring of a jumping horse. In the early 1500s, the
English word "gambol" romped into print as both a verb and a
noun. (The noun means "a skipping or leaping about in play.")
The English word is not restricted to horses, but rather can be
used of any frolicsome creature. It is a word that suggests
levity and spontaneity, and it tends to be used especially of
the lively activity of children or animals engaged in active
play.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

When he was little, Bambi had a gamboling problem. He couldn't even make it 3 steps, let alone complete the full 12-step program.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

:: admires how Bob has maintained this thread con amore ::

[in all three of the ways mentinoned in def. 1, I might add]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 10 was:

shivaree \shih-vuh-REE\ noun
: a noisy mock serenade to a newly married couple

Example sentence:
On the night of Sally and Henry's wedding, the townspeople
gathered outside the couple's window to participate in a raucous
shivaree.

Did you know?
In 19th century rural America, a newly-married couple might
be treated to a mock serenade, performed with pots, pans,
homemade instruments, and other noisemakers. Such cacophonous
for second marriages or for unions deemed incongruous because of
an age discrepancy or some other cause. In the eastern U.S. this
custom, imported from rural England, was simply called
a "serenade" or known under various local names. In much of the
central U.S. and Canada, however, it was called a "shivaree," a
loan from French "charivari," which denotes the same folk custom
in France. In more recent years, "shivaree" has also developed
broader senses; it is sometimes used to mean simply "a
cacophony" or "a celebration."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 11 is:

1 : built of red brick
*2 often capitalized : of, relating to, or being the British
universities founded in the 19th or early 20th century

Example sentence:
Maureen graduated with a Redbrick degree three years ago
and now works in London.

Did you know?
Although red brick is a perfectly innocent building
material in America, the British usage of "redbrick" is often
potentially uncomplimentary. "Redbrick" is a British coinage
created to denote the universities which were newer and perhaps
less prestigious than Oxford and Cambridge (and sometimes the
ancient universities of Scotland). These newer universities
tended to be constructed of red brick, rather than the stone
used for Oxford and Cambridge, and were most often created in
industrial cities such as Liverpool. Sometimes the term is also
used to distinguish these universities from those built after
World War II. Limited evidence suggests that "redbrick" may be
developing an extended meaning of "lower-class" or "working
class," but this is not established enough to merit dictionary
entry.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 12 is:

*1 : of, relating to, or occurring in the evening
2 : active, flowering, or flourishing in the evening :
crepuscular

Example sentence:
A vespertine fog crept over the farm, concealing the
outbuildings and the orchard and stranding the house in an inky
ocean of darkness as the evening turned to night.

Did you know?
Imagine this vespertine scenario: Hesperus, the Evening
Star, shines in a clear sky; little brown bats flutter near the
treetops; somewhere in the distance a church bell calls
worshipers to the evening service. Can you find three words
(other than "vespertine") associated with the Latin
root "vesper," which means "evening," hidden in that scene? The
evening star was once known as "Vesper" ("Hesperus" is from the
Greek for "evening"); "vespertilian" means "batlike" (the Latin
for bat is "vespertilio"); and we still call an evening worship
service "vespers."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Ella's voice grew huskier and deeper at dusk, as if she needed a long, hard day of living to get to a place where she could wearily unfold
herself -- the sounds rising from her throat in thick profusions, a vespertine performance that clung to the air and your senses like a cloud of expensive perfume.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

The sounds of guests clanging glasses and scraping silverware on (real!) plates, loud chatter about private schools, retirement planning, world travel and who is still married and who is divorced (and why), constant billowing laughter, the occasional punctuation of a ringing cell phone, the half-hearted exhortations and blurry, tinny spinnings of a nebbish dj, Mark saw it all as a modern-day shivaree and knew that it was time to either flee or -- dance!

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Now is the time on "Word of the Day" when we dance!!!

The Word of the Day for June 13 is:

chin-wag \CHIN-wag\ noun
slang : conversation, chat

Example sentence:
"Few things in life are better than a good chin-wag over a
cup of tea," my aunt often said, and I have fond memories of our
many teatime chats.

Did you know?
In English, phrases about wagging tongues have suggested
the act of speech since at least the late 1500s. The pairing
of "chin" with "wag" to refer to talk didn't occur until several
centuries later, but when it did, "chin" took on a life of its
own as a term for idle chatter. Other "chin" expressions for
loose lips include "chin-music" (a noun meaning "idle talk,
chatter"), "chinfest" (another noun synonymous with "chat"),
and "chin" itself (which can be used either as a verb
meaning "to chatter" or a noun meaning "a chat").

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by BelladonnaOrchid (Member # 188) on :

Hey-Bob-I've got a question. I've been reading along on this thread for the past couple of weeks, and I was wondering if the word of the day for June 22nd (in honor of my 21st birthday) could be discombobulated? I love that word! He he he...

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Where's the suspense in that???

Well, actually, I might be out of town that day and forget, but otherwise, I'll see what I can do.

The Word of the Day for June 14 was:

vexillologist \vek-suh-LAH-luh-jist\ noun
: one who studies flags

Example sentence:
Any true vexillologist in America would know that although
Betsy Ross made flags for the navy she did not actually make the
first national flag as legend holds.

Did you know?
"The flag is the embodiment, not of sentiment, but of
history." Woodrow Wilson was speaking of the U.S. flag when he
made that statement in an address in June of 1915, but
vexillologists would likely find the comment applicable to any
national banner. Vexillologists undertake scholarly
investigations of flags, producing papers with titles such as "A
Review of the Changing Proportions of Rectangular Flags Since
Medieval Times, and Some Suggestions for the Future." In the
late 1950s, they coined a name for their field of research
("vexillology") and for members of their profession
("vexillologists") from "vexillum," the Latin term for a square
flag or banner of the ancient Roman cavalry.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 15 is:

1 : ragged, unkempt
*2 : composed of diverse often incongruous elements : motley

Example sentence:
Despite fielding a ragtag collection of players unwanted by
other teams, the Barons finished the season with a winning
record.

Did you know?
"Tag and rag" was a relatively common expression in the
16th and 17th centuries, and was often used pejoratively to
refer to members of the lower classes of society. By the 19th
century, the phrase had been incorporated into "rag, tag and
bobtail." That expression could mean either "the lower classes"
or "the entire lot of something" (as opposed to just the more
desirable parts ... the entire unit of an army, for example, not
just its more capable soldiers). Something described as "ragtag
and bobtail," then, was usually common and unspectacular and not
considered the cream of the crop. "Ragtag and bobtail" was
eventually shortened to "ragtag," the adjective we know today,
which can describe an odd mixture that is often also hastily
assembled or second-rate.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 16 is:

Davy Jones's locker \day-vee-joanz-LAH-ker\ noun
: the bottom of the ocean

Example sentence:
The old seaman shook his head sadly and said, "That ship
was sunk on a reef three years ago, and every poor soul aboard
sent to Davy Jones's locker."

Did you know?
Was there a real Davy Jones? Folks have been pondering that
question for centuries. Sailors have long used "Davy Jones" as
the name of a personified evil spirit of the ocean depths, but
no one knows exactly why. Some claim the original Davy Jones was
a British pirate, but the evidence that this person existed is
lacking. Others swear he was a London pub owner who kept drugged
ale in a special locker, served it to the unwary, then had them
shanghaied. But the theory considered most plausible is
that "Davy" was inspired by St. David, the patron saint of
Wales. (St. David was often invoked by Welsh sailors.) "Jones"
is traced to Jonah, the biblical figure who was swallowed by a
whale.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 17 is:

: clockwise

Example sentence:
"'Twas a lovely show, with all the wee children carrying
their little flowers and marching deasil 'round in a circle," my
Scottish uncle declared after watching our daughter's school
pageant.

Did you know?
It's an old custom that you can bring someone good fortune
by walking around them clockwise three times while carrying a
torch or candle. In Scottish Gaelic, the word "deiseil" is used
for the direction one walks in such a luck-bringing ritual.
English speakers modified the spelling to "deasil," and have
used the word as both the name of the clockwise charm and the
direction one walks when working it.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

I awoke with a massive hangover and noticed that when I flushed the toilet, the water was swirling deasil into the drain. Somehow I'd made it to the Southern Hemisphere afterall.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 18 is:

waterloo \waw-ter-LOO\ noun
: a decisive or final defeat or setback

Example sentence:
The tense chess match between Jim and his father went on
for most of the afternoon, until Jim met his waterloo shortly
before dinner.

Did you know?
The Battle of Waterloo, which occurred on June 18, 1815,
has given its name to the very notion of final defeat. Why?
Maybe because it ended one of the most spectacular military
careers in history (Napoleon's), as well as 23 years of
recurrent conflict between France and the rest of Europe. In
addition, it was Napoleon's second "final defeat." He was
defeated and exiled in 1814, but he escaped his confinement,
returned to France, and was restored to power for three months
before meeting defeat at the hands of the forces allied under
the Duke of Wellington near the Belgian village of Waterloo. The
word "waterloo" first appeared in casual use the following year,
1816.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 19 is:

osculate \AHSS-kyuh-layt\ verb
: kiss

Example sentence:
"I've been osculated to death," Kevin complained, wiping
his cheeks to remove the vestiges of kisses planted there by
adoring aunts and cousins on his wedding day.

Did you know?
"Osculate" comes from the Latin noun "osculum,"
meaning "kiss" or "little mouth." It was included in a
dictionary of "hard" words in 1656, but we have no evidence that
anyone actually used it until the 19th century (except for
scientists who used it differently, to mean "contact"). Would
any modern writer use "osculate"? Ben Macintyre did. In a May
2003 (London) _Times_ piece entitled "Yes, It's True, I Kissed
the Prime Minister's Wife," Macintyre wrote, "Assuming this must
be someone I knew really quite well, I screeched 'How are
you,'... and leant forward preparatory to giving her a chummy
double-smacker... Perhaps being osculated by lunatics you have
never seen before is one of the trials of being a Prime
Minister's wife. She took it very well. "

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by T_Smith (Member # 3734) on :

Mmmmmm.... osculation....

I learned that word from the Disney Hercules cartoon show...

hehe

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 20 is:

: committed to or supportive of a cause

Example sentence:
It came as no surprise when Carol, always the most engage
of an already very politically active and socially committed
family, became an outspoken advocate for the disabled.

Did you know?
"Engage" is the past participle of the French
verb "engager," meaning "to engage." The French have
used "engage" since the 19th century to describe socially or
politically active people. The term became particularly
fashionable in the wake of World War II, when French writers,
artists and intellectuals felt it was increasingly important for
them to take a stand on political or social issues and represent
their attitudes in their art. By 1946, English speakers had
adopted the word for their own politically relevant writing or
art, and within a short time "engage" was being used generally
for any passionate commitment to a cause.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

"Ya know, I like Audrey okay. I mean she's done some good things for the office, but she acts like she's all 'the queen of engage.' You know what I mean? I want to tell her 'Okay, we get it. You went to Sarah Lawrence. Big freekin' deal.'"

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Gordon's personal waterloo involved both water and a loo. Of course, there was also the matter of a racoon, an industrial-sized bottle of cologne, and a partially eaten Rock Cornish game hen.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 23 is:

bloviate \BLOH-vee-ayt\ verb
: to speak or write verbosely and windily

Example sentence:
Paul can bloviate on a par with the windiest of
politicians, but he's also capable of being concise and getting
right to the point.

Did you know?
Warren G. Harding is often linked to "bloviate," but to him
the word wasn't even remotely insulting; it simply meant "to
spend time idly." Harding used the word often in that "hanging
around" sense, but during his tenure as the 29th U.S. President
(1921-23), he became associated with the "verbose" sense
of "bloviate," perhaps because his speeches tended to the long-
winded side. Although he is sometimes credited with having
coined the word, it's more likely that Harding picked it up from
local slang while hanging around with his boyhood buddies in
Ohio in the late 1800s. The term most likely derives from a
combination of the word "blow" plus the suffix "-ate."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

quote:

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Zalmoxis can bloviate more subtley than anyone I know.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 25 is:

1 : sunk to or existing in a low state or condition
2 a : cast down in spirit : servile, spiritless *b :
showing utter hopelessness or resignation
3 : expressing or offered in a humble and often
ingratiating spirit

Example sentence:
"In reality the difference between spectacular success and
abject failure can come down to a little luck and a few
dedicated inventors toiling behind the scenes." (Robert Langreth
and Zina Moukheiber, _Forbes_, June 23, 2003)

Did you know?
"Abject" comes to us from Latin "abjectus," the past
participle of the verb "abicere," meaning "to cast
off." "Abicere" in turn comes from the prefix "ab-" ("away,
off") and the verb "jacere," which means "to throw." As you may
have guessed, "reject" is a cousin of "abject" -- it is
ultimately derived from "re-" and "jacere." (Both words arrived
in English in the 15th century.) "Jacere" has a number of other
descendants in English as well,
including "deject," "eject," "conjecture," and "adjective,"
just to name a few.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Pixie (Member # 4043) on :

This is my abject response to one of my favorite threads.

...BTW, does anyone else see the similarity between "Jacare" and "jacere"? Excepting the one vowel, they're exactly the same.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

One of the most unpleasant social experiences I have ever had was meeting an abject young man and his mother who, no joke, were just like Uriah Heep and his mother. It was dang creepy.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 26 is:

dernier cri \dairn-yay-KREE\ noun
: the newest fashion

Example sentence:
"The dernier cri today is cheap rubber flip-flops from
Brazilian supermarkets, embellished with beads or sequins."
(_The [London] Times_, April 8, 2003)

Did you know?
Paris has long been the last word in fashion, but hot
designer clothes from the city's renowned runways aren't the
only stylish French exports. Words, too, sometimes come with a
French label. "Dernier cri," literally "last cry," is one such
chic French borrowing. The word is no trendy fad, however. More
than a century has passed since "dernier cri" was the latest
thing on the English language scene (and cut-steel jewelry was
declared the dernier cri by the _Westminster Gazette_ of
December 10, 1896), but the term (unlike cut-steel) remains as
modish as ever. Other fashionable French words have walked the
American runways since then: "blouson" (1904); "couture"
(1908); "culotte" (1911); "lame" (a clothing fabric, 1922);
and "bikini" (1947), to name a few.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Pixie (Member # 4043) on :

Unlike most people my age, I tend to shy away from the dernier cri of too-small shirts and too-short shorts. ...Usually.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 27 is:

olla podrida \ah-luh-puh-DREE-duh\ noun
1 : a rich highly seasoned stew of meat and vegetables
usually including sausage and chickpeas that is slowly simmered
and is a traditional Spanish and Latin-American dish
*2 : hodgepodge

Example sentence:
Luiza walked along silently, gazing at the astonishing olla
podrida of contemporary and antique furniture, carpets,
knickknacks, and baubles packed into the house.

Did you know?
In 1599, lexicographer John Minsheu wanted to know "from
whence or why they call it olla podrida." Good question. No one
is sure why the Spanish used a term that means "rotten pot" to
name a tasty stew, but there has been plenty of speculation on
the subject. One theory holds that the name developed because
the long, slow cooking process required to make the stew was
compared to the process of rotting, but there's no definitive
evidence to support that idea. It is more certain that both
French and English speakers borrowed "olla podrida" and later
adapted the term for other mixtures whose content was as varied
as the stew. The French also translated "olla podrida" as "pot
pourri," an expression English speakers adapted to "potpourri."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

He stepped lightly into the olla prodrida of the farmer's market, and then had to stop to scrape chickpeas off of his shoe before boarding the ferry.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The biggest worry in the liberal arts education offered by most universities today is the danger of turning impressionable young minds into an olla podrida of classical influences and modern fads.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 28 is:

derring-do \dair-ing-DOO\ noun
: daring action : daring

Example sentence:
At the circus one can see clownish buffoonery, trained
animals, and acrobatic feats of derring-do, all in one place.

Did you know?
"Derring-do" is a quirky holdover from Middle English that
came to occupy its present place in the language by a series of
mistakes and misunderstandings. In Middle English, "dorring don"
meant simply "daring to do." For example, Geoffrey Chaucer
used "dorring don" around 1374 when he described a
knight "daring to do" brave deeds. The phrase was misprinted
as "derrynge do" in a 16th-century edition of a 15th-century
work by poet John Lydgate, and Edmund Spenser took it up from
there, assuming it was meant as a substantive or noun phrase. (A
glossary to Spenser's work defined it as "manhood and
chevalrie.") Sir Walter Scott and others in the 19th century got
the phrase from Spenser and brought it into modern use.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

MTV has spawned a who generation of derring-do-do's.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 29 is:

moil \MOYL\ verb
*1 : to work hard : drudge
2 : to be in continuous agitation : churn, swirl

Example sentence:
"There are strange things done in the midnight sun / By the
men who moil for gold." (Robert W. Service, "The Cremation of
Sam McGee")

Did you know?
"Moil" comes to us from the Anglo-French "moiller," which
means "to make wet, dampen" or even "to paddle in mud" -- fine
visual imagery for the sort of drudge work to which this word
refers. "Moil" is also often used as a noun, and because of the
rhyming syllables, it frequently appears in the colorful
pairing "toil and moil." "Moiller" comes from the
Latin "mollis," meaning "soft." Other English derivatives
of "mollis" are "emollient," "mollify," and "mollusk."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for June 30 is:

antebellum • \an-tih-BEH-lum\ • adjective
: existing before a war; especially : existing before the Civil War

Example sentence:
Gone With the Wind, published June 30, 1936, follows Scarlett O'Hara from her life of privilege in the antebellum South, through the hardships of the Civil War, and into the post-war reconstruction period.

Did you know?
"Antebellum" means "before the war," but it wasn't widely associated with the U.S. Civil War (1861-1865) until after that conflict was over. It comes from the Latin phrase "ante bellum" (literally, "before the war"). Although it did appear in at least one publication around 1847, that reference clearly wasn't to the War Between the States. The term's earliest known association with the Civil War is found in an 1862 diary entry: "Her face was placid and unmoved, as in antebellum days." The author of that line, Mary Boykin Miller Chesnut, recorded the observation of life during the Civil War while accompanying her husband, an officer in the Confederate army, on one of his missions.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

He finally came to the decision that his love for the abolitionist's daughter was strictly an antebellum affair. Somehow he had returned to Vermont a man less impressed by vociferousness and conviction. The same qualities that had seemed so attractive, so radical, so vivacious, now grated. He had no energy left to moil. No patience for ragtag discussions at long meetings with refreshments that looked and tasted as if they'd been dredged up from Davy Jones's locker.

Yes, his love had cooled. More than cooled. He had lost it somewhere between Harper's Ferry and Antietam. And although he was one of the lucky ones, one to be envied, one who had returned home, and what's more, one who had returned to a fiancee and a rich father-in-law, he knew he'd never be able to slot himself into the path that lay before him.

So what was he he do?

It was time to find a true vocation. To become a taxidermist, or even better, a vexillologist (he'd never been fond of venery). It lacked the derring do quality that he had always insisted upon. But times had changed, and a lifetime of minutiae, of faded, musty fabrics, of colored dyes, of bars and stripes and seals and crests, didn't sound so bad to him now. Now. Now that he had returned.

Posted by sarcasticmuppet (Member # 5035) on :

I know it's from a few days ago (the 26th), but I can't resist.

Paula's fashinable high-heeled shoes and mini skirt proved too much for her, causing her to fall on her dernier.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Good one. Bob-orific even.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 1 is:

Antaean • \an-TEE-un\ • adjective
1 : mammoth
*2 : having superhuman strength

Example sentence:
In an emergency, an average person can become an Antaean powerhouse, capable even of lifting a car to rescue someone trapped underneath.

Did you know?
In Greek mythology, Antaeus was the gigantic and powerful son of Gaea the Earth goddess and Poseidon the sea god. Antaeus was a wrestler and whenever he touched his mother (the Earth), his strength was renewed, so he always won his battles even if his opponents threw him to the ground. He proved invincible until he challenged Hercules to wrestle. Hercules discovered the source of the giant's strength, lifted him off the ground, and crushed him to death. In 18th century England, the poet William Mason discovered the power of "Antaean" as a descriptive English adjective, when he used it in his Ode to the Hon. William Pitt:

If foil'd at first, resume thy course
Rise strengthen'd with Antaean force.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

He was an Antaean man, prone to ruining picnics and backyard bbq's by insisting on sitting on the cooler or thumbwrestling young children or opening soda cans with his fist.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 2 is:

shanghai \SHANG-hye\ verb
: to force aboard a ship for service as a sailor; also : to
trick or force into an undesirable position

Example sentence:
"I'm being shanghaied!" cried Uncle Jim at the family
picnic when Aunt Marie pulled him away from the volleyball game
to start the barbecue.

Did you know?
In the 1800s, long sea voyages were very difficult and
dangerous, so people were understandably hesitant to become
sailors. But sea captains and shipping companies needed crews to
sail their ships, so they gathered sailors any way they could --
even if that meant resorting to kidnapping by physical force or
with the help of liquor or drugs. The word "shanghai" comes from
the name of the Chinese city of Shanghai. People started to use
the city's name for that unscrupulous way of obtaining sailors
because the East was often a destination of ships that had
kidnapped men onboard as crew.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by filetted (Member # 5048) on :

"I've been Shanghied', cried the maggot to it's wriggling brethren as it disappeared down the sailor's gullet.

It's a little known fact that the sailors of yore who ate the maggots in their bread rather than picking them out were the ones who didn't suffer from scurvy.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 3 is:

viand \VYE-und\ noun
1 : an item of food; especially : a choice or tasty dish
*2 plural : provisions, food

Example sentence:
Adam couldn't help smiling as he read the opening line of
the invitation to the Smith's annual wine-tasting and dinner
party: "Join Us for Vino and Viands."

Did you know?
Are you someone who eats to live, or someone who lives to
eat? Either way, you'll find that the etymology of "viand"
reflects the close link between food and life. "Viand" entered
English in the 15th century from Anglo-French ("viande"
means "meat" even in modern French), and it derives ultimately
from the Latin "vivere," meaning "to live." "Vivere" is the
ancestor of a number of other lively and life-giving words in
English, including "victual," "revive," "survive," "convivial,"
and "vivacious."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 4 is:

: of or relating to the dog days of summer

Example sentence:
My canicular cravings are few, but they are irresistible:
a cold drink, a soft hammock, and a good read.

Did you know?
The Latin word "canicula," meaning "small dog," is the
diminutive form of "canis," the word that ultimately gives us
the English word "canine." "Canicula" was also the name for
Sirius, the star that represents the hound of the hunter Orion
in the constellation named for that Roman mythological figure.
Because the first visible rising of Sirius occurs during the
summer, the hot sultry days that occur from early July to early
September came to be called "dies caniculares," or as we know
them in English, "the dog days."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

As his mind grew weary of darkness punctuated only by star light and halogens and flourescents, he began to hallucinate, transporting himself into a languid, canicular place where potato salad, sno cones, and fried chicken collided with clogging, bluegrass and fireworks and clouded his senses with remembered textures, sounds and smells.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 5 is:

: lasting a short time : evanescent

Example sentence:
Julie's bad mood was fugacious; she cheered up considerably
when her son phoned to say he would be coming home for a visit.

Did you know?
"Fugacious" is often used to describe immaterial things
like emotions, but not always. Botanists also use it to describe
plant parts that wither or fall off before the usual time.
Things that are fugacious are "fleeting," and etymologically
they can also be said to be "fleeing." "Fugacious" derives from
the Latin verb "fugere," which means "to flee." Other
descendants of "fugere" include "fugitive," "refuge,"
and "subterfuge."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Hmm...fugu should like this one.

Posted by Hobbes (Member # 433) on :

Bob's big day seemed rather fugacious to him.
Bob's post count on the other hand, repudiated even the idead of a fugacious stay at Hatrack.

Hobbes

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 6 is:

: in a headlong dash : at a gallop

Example sentence:
The picnic feast was all laid out when suddenly the
skies opened up -- what a scramble as everyone grabbed something
and headed tantivy for the shelter of the porch!

Did you know?
"Tantivy" is also a noun meaning "a rapid gallop" or "an
impetuous rush." Although its precise origin isn't known, one
theory has it that "tantivy" represents the sound of a galloping
horse's hooves. The noun does double duty as a word meaning "the
blare of a trumpet or horn." This is probably due to confusion
with "tantara," a word for the sound of a trumpet that came
about as an imitation of that sound. Both "tantivy"
and "tantara" were used during foxhunts; in the heat of the
chase people may have jumbled the two.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 7 is:

cognoscente \kahn-yuh-SHEN-tee\ noun, plural cognoscenti
: a person who has expert knowledge in a subject :
connoisseur

Example sentence:
"The great but not widely known pianist Dave McKenna ... is
revered by the jazz cognoscenti as an inspired interpreter of
American standards...." (Joseph Nocera, _GQ_, March 1997)

Did you know?
"Cognoscente" and "connoisseur" are more than synonyms;
they're also linguistic cousins. Both terms descend from the
Latin verb "cognoscere," meaning "to know," and they're not
alone. You may know that "cognizance" and "cognition" are
members of the "cognoscere" clan. Do you also recognize a family
resemblance in "recognize"? Can you see through the disguise
of "incognito"? Did you have a premonition that we would
mention "precognition"? "Cognoscente" itself came to English by
way of Italian and has been a part of our language since the
late 1700s. Today it is almost always used in its plural
form, "cognoscenti."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

Bob was known among the Jatraqueros as a one of the local cognoscenti.

Posted by fugu13 (Member # 2859) on :

Example: the hypocrite often uses the same tactics he condemns in others.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

It was more than a tantivy of poor taste; it was a thread shanghai-ing. However, in the larger scheme of the word of the day thread, its effects were merely fugacious.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 9 is:

peloton \peh-luh-TAHN\ noun
: the main body of riders in a bicycle race

Example sentence:
Thousands of cycling fans lined the race route, relaxing in
lawn chairs as they waited for the peloton to speed by.

Did you know?
If you've ever watched the Tour de France on television,
you've seen plenty of the peloton, the seemingly endless flow of
brightly colored riders making up the central group. You may
have also gained some inadvertent insight into the word itself,
which as you may have guessed is French in origin. In
French, "peloton" literally means "ball," but it is most often
used with the meaning "group." It's frequently used in the
bicycling context, just as in English, but it can also refer to
a group in a marathon or other sporting event. French "peloton"
can also mean "squad" or "platoon," and since we've told you
that you probably won't be too surprised to learn that it is
also the source of our word "platoon."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

bogart \BOH-gart\ verb
1: bully, intimidate
*2: to use or consume without sharing

Example sentence:
"[The dog] lay dazed on her side on the kitchen floor,
bogarting a bone, dozens more scattered around her like some dog
play set she'd grown bored with." (Douglas Bauer, _The Boston
Globe_, July 25, 2001)

Did you know?
The legendary film actor Humphrey Bogart was known for
playing a range of tough characters in a series of films
throughout the 1940s and 1950s, including "The Maltese
Falcon", "Casablanca," and "The African Queen." The men he
portrayed often possessed a cool, hardened exterior that
occasionally let forth a suggestion of romantic or idealistic
sentimentality. Bogart also had a unique method of smoking
cigarettes in these pictures -- letting the butt dangle from his
mouth without removing it until it was almost entirely consumed.
It is believed that this habit inspired the current meaning
of "bogart," which was once limited to the phrase "Don't bogart
that joint [marijuana cigarette]," but can now be applied to
almost anything, from food to physical space (as on a beach).

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 17 is:

yegg \YEG\ noun
: safecracker; also : robber

Example sentence:
"[Her] attorney does admit that his client had
developed 'platonic' relationships with two cons, a couple of
yeggs named Ollie and Marvin, but only to gather information."
(_Fort Collins Coloradoan_, Dec. 6, 2002)

Did you know?
"Safecracker" first appeared in print in English around
1825, but English speakers evidently felt that they needed a
more colorful word for this rather colorful profession. No one
is quite sure where "yegg" came from. It first appeared in the
_New York Evening Post_ on June 23, 1903, in an article
about "the prompt breaking up of the organized gangs of
professional beggars and yeggs." By 1905, it had acquired the
variant "yeggmen," which was printed in the _New York Times_ in
reference to unsavory characters captured in the Bowery
District. "Yegg" has always been, and continues to be, less
common than "safecracker," but it still turns up once in a while.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 19 is:

: incapable of being corrected, amended, or reformed :
delinquent, unruly

Example sentence:
Neil was such an incorrigible slob that his parents
eventually gave up nagging him about cleaning his room and
simply told him to keep the door closed.

Did you know?
"Incorrigible" has been part of English since the 14th
century. It derives in part from the Latin "corrigere,"
meaning "to correct," which in turn derives from "regere,"
meaning "to lead straight." In its early uses "incorrigible" was
primarily used to describe people who were morally depraved, but
now it is most often applied to people who merely have bad
habits that seemingly cannot be broken. The word can also be
used as a noun to refer to a person who possesses such habits.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 21 is:

alterity \awl-TAIR-uh-tee\ noun
: otherness; _specifically_ : the quality or state of being
radically alien to the conscious self or a particular cultural
orientation

Example sentence:
"And it is precisely this mix of alterity and swampy
familiarity that allows [his] works to elude conceptual summary
so successfully." (David Kaufmann, _Shofar Magazine_, Winter
2003)

Did you know?
You're probably familiar with the verb "alter," meaning "to
make or become different." If so, you already have some insight
into the origins of "alterity" -- like our "alter," it's from
the Latin word "alter," meaning "other (of two)." (The
Latin "alter," in turn, comes from a prehistoric Indo-European
word that is also an ancestor of our "alien.") "Alterity" has
been used in English as a fancy word for "otherness" ("the state
of being other") since at least 1642. It remains less common
than "otherness" and tends to turn up most often in the context
of literary theory or cultural studies.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

q: What did the neo-paganist, Chicana lesbian say to the agnostic, east-Indian transgendered person at the UN conference on the protection of multicultural, mixed and indigenous ethnies?

a: "Hey, stop bogarting all the alterity."

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 22 is:

MacGuffin \muh-GUH-fin\ noun
: an object, event, or character in a film or story that
serves to set and keep the plot in motion despite usually
lacking intrinsic importance

Example sentence:
The missing document is the MacGuffin that sends the two
spies off on an action-packed race around the world, but the
real story centers on tension between the main characters.

Did you know?
The first person to use "MacGuffin" as a word for a plot
device was Alfred Hitchcock. He borrowed it from an old shaggy-
dog story in which some passengers on a train interrogate a
fellow passenger carrying a large, strange-looking package. The
fellow says the package contains a "MacGuffin," which, he
explains, is used to catch tigers in the Scottish Highlands.
When the group protests that there are no tigers in the
Highlands, the passenger replies, "Well, then, this must not be
a MacGuffin." Hitchcock apparently appreciated the way the
mysterious package keeps the audience's attention and builds
suspense. He recognized that an audience anticipating a solution
to a mystery will continue to follow the story even if the
initial interest-grabber turns out to be irrelevant.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 23 is:

: of, relating to, suggestive of, or resembling a lion

Example sentence:
"He had sat smoking cigarettes to keep himself quiet while,
caged and leonine, his fellow traveller paced and turned before
him." (Henry James, _The Ambassadors_)

Did you know?
"Leonine" derives from Latin "leo," meaning "lion," which
in turn comes from Greek "leon." "Leon" gave us an interesting
range of words: "leopard" (which is "leon" combined
with "pardos," a Greek word for a panther-like
animal); "dandelion" (which came by way of the Anglo-French
phrase "dent de lion" -- literally, "lion's tooth");
and "chameleon" (which uses the combining form from Greek that
means "close to the ground"); as well as the names "Leon"
and "Leonard." But the dancer's and gymnast's leotard is not
named for its wearer's cat-like movements. Rather, it was simply
named after its inventor, Jules Leotard, a 19th-century French
aerial gymnast.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 25 is:

Wellerism \WEH-luh-rih-zum\ noun
: an expression of comparison comprising a usually well-
known quotation followed by a facetious sequel

Example sentence:
Forgetful (but witty) Aunt Lynn's favorite Wellerism
is, "'It all comes back to me now', said the Captain as he spat
into the wind."

Did you know?
Sam Weller, Mr. Pickwick's good-natured servant in Charles
Dickens' _The Pickwick Papers_, and his father were fond of
following well-known sayings or phrases with humorous or punning
conclusions. For example, in one incident in the book, Sam
Weller quips, "What the devil do you want with me, as the man
said, w[h]en he see the ghost?" Neither Charles Dickens nor Sam
Weller invented that type of word play, but Weller's tendency to
use such witticisms had provoked people to start calling
them "Wellerisms" by 1839, soon after the publication of the
novel. Some examples of common Wellerisms are "'Every one to his
own taste,' said the old woman as she kissed the cow," and "'I
see,' said the blind man."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 26 is:

usufruct \YOO-zuh-frukt\ noun
*1 : the legal right of using and enjoying the fruits or
profits of something belonging to another
2 : the right to use or enjoy something

Example sentence:
When they sold the land, the Arnolds retained the usufruct
to pick the apples in the orchards they had planted.

Did you know?
Thomas Jefferson said that "The earth belongs in usufruct
to the living." He apparently understood that when you hold
something in usufruct, you gain something of significant value,
but only temporarily. The gains granted by "usufruct" can be
clearly seen in the Latin phrase from which the word
developed, "usus et fructus," which means "use and enjoyment."
Latin speakers condensed that phrase to "ususfructus," the term
English speakers used as the model for our modern
word. "Usufruct" has been used as a noun for rights that seem
the legal equivalent of having your cake and eating it too since
at least the 1630s. Any right granted by usufruct ends at a
specific point, usually the death of the individual who holds it.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 27 is:

luftmensch \LOOFT-mensh ("OO" as in "foot")\ noun
: an impractical contemplative person having no
definite business or income

Example sentence:
"The son ...," wrote American author Irving Howe, "is
leaving to be a luftmensch -- a starving poet, a painter without

Did you know?
Are you someone who always seems to have your head in
the clouds? Do you have trouble getting down to the lowly
business of earning a living? If so, you may deserve to be
labeled a "luftmensch." That airy appellation is an adaptation
of the Yiddish "luftmentsh," which breaks down into "luft" (a
Germanic root that can be tied linguistically to the English
words "loft" and "lofty"), meaning "air," plus "mentsh,"
meaning "human being." "Luftmensch" was first introduced to
English prose in 1907, when Israel Zangwill wrote "The
word 'Luftmensch' flew into Barstein's mind. Nehemiah was not an
earth-man .... He was an air-man, floating on facile wings."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 28 is:

quietus \kwye-EE-tus\ noun
1 : final settlement (as of a debt)
*2 : removal from activity; especially : death
3 : something that quiets or represses

Example sentence:
"This book is also about the death of Lavrenti Pavlovich
Beria, a quietus that for reasons not satisfactorily explained
has been placed a year later than it actually occurred." (Ruth
Rendell, _The New York Times Book Review_, April 6, 1986)

Did you know?
In the early 1500s, English speakers adopted the Medieval
Latin phrase "quietus est" (literally "he is quit") as the name
for the writ of discharge exempting a baron or knight from
payment of a knight's fee to the king. The expression was later
shortened to "quietus" and applied to the termination of any
debt. William Shakespeare was the first to use "quietus" as a
metaphor for the termination of life: "For who would bear the
whips and scorns of time, ...When he himself might his quietus
make / With a bare bodkin?" (_Hamlet_). The third meaning, which
is more influenced by "quiet" than "quit," appeared in the 19th
century. It sometimes occurs in the phrase "put the quietus on"
(as in, "The bad news put the quietus on their celebration").

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Nathan didn't even have the imagination to be a luftmensch -- he was always swinging from one obsession to another, filling his brain with whatever random pamphlet he'd been given at the bus stop or on campus. He was, well, a true loofamensch.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 29 is:

: difficult or irritating to deal with

Example sentence:
Philip was always cantankerous in the morning, given to
snapping and snarling until he'd had his first cup of coffee and
a soothing hot shower.

Did you know?
It's irritating, but we're not absolutely sure
where "cantankerous" comes from. Most etymologists think it
probably derived from the Middle English word "contack"
(or "contek"), which meant "contention" or "strife." Their idea
is that "cantankerous" may have started out as "contackerous,"
but it was later modified as a result of association or
confusion with "rancorous" (meaning "spiteful") and "cankerous"
(which refers to something that spreads corruption of the mind
or spirit). Considering that a cantankerous person generally has
the spite associated with "contack" and "rancor," and the
noxious and sometimes painful effects of a "canker," that theory
seems plausible. What we can say with conviction is
that "cantankerous" has been used in English since the late
1700s.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 30 is:

de minimis \dee-MIH-nih-miss\ adjective
: lacking significance or importance : so minor as to merit
disregard

Example sentence:
"The likelihood that I'm going to win the lottery is de
minimis," said the struggling young law student, "so I don't
expect to be buying that luxury yacht I've got my eye on anytime
soon."

Did you know?
Proponents of readable prose over jargon and legalese might
argue that the last thing 20th-century American jurisprudence
needed was another Latin term. Yet here we have a legal term
that entered English only around 1950. Perhaps we should
clarify: the legal doctrine of "de minimis non curat lex" ("the
law does not concern itself with trifling matters") has been
around for awhile, but use of "de minimis" on its own is
relatively recent. At first, the shortened phrase was simply
used to refer to the legal doctrine itself ("the de minimis
rule"). Then it came to be used more broadly as an adjective
("de minimis contacts with the defendant"). Finally, "de
minimis" leaked out of the courtroom and into the world at
large.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for July 31 is:

*1 : characterized by rapid and unpredictable changeableness
of mood
2 : of, relating to, containing, or caused by mercury

Example sentence:
Paul's mercurial moods made him extremely difficult to work
with because even the most innocuous event could provoke a fit
of violent temper.

Did you know?
The Roman god Mercury ("Mercurius" in Latin) was the
messenger and herald of the gods and also the god of merchants
and thieves. (His counterpart in Greek mythology is Hermes.) He
was noted for his eloquence, swiftness, and cunning, and the
Romans named what appeared to them to be the fastest-moving
planet in his honor. The Latin adjective derived from his
name, "mercurialis," meaning "of or relating to Mercury," was
borrowed into English in the 14th century as "mercurial."
Although the adjective initially meant "born under the planet
Mercury," it came to mean also "having qualities of eloquence,
ingenuity, or thievishness attributed to the god Mercury or the
influence of the planet Mercury," and then "unpredictably
changeable."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

For years I drove around in a late 70's mercurial Cougar.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 1 is:

chiefly British : affectedly or excessively dainty,
delicate, cute, or quaint

Example sentence:
Thatched-roof birdhouses with posies in the windows are a
bit too twee for Annalese, who doesn't go in much for cutesiness.

Did you know?
Most adults wouldn't be caught dead saying, "Oh, look at
the tweet 'ittle birdie!" (at least not to anyone over the age
of three), but they probably wouldn't be averse to saying, "He
went fishing with his dad," "She works as a nanny," or "Hey,
buddy, how's it going?" Anyone who uses "dad," "nanny,"
or "buddy" owes a debt to "baby talk," a term used for both the
the speech of small children who are just learning to
talk. "Twee" also originated in baby talk, as an alteration
of "sweet." In the early 1900s, it was a term of affection, but
nowadays British speakers and writers, and, increasingly,
Americans as well, use "twee" for things that have passed beyond
agreeable and into the realm of cloying.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Reminds me of a scene where Groucho is sitting in a canoe with some woman who is talking baby talk. His reply:

"If baby doesn't stop tawking wike dat, ookums will smash awl her widdle teef white down her froat!"

[ August 01, 2003, 09:34 AM: Message edited by: Bob_Scopatz ]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 2 is:

sensibility \sen-suh-BIH-luh-tee\ noun
1 : ability to receive sensations : sensitiveness
*2 : the emotion or feeling of which a person is capable
3 : refined or excessive sensitiveness in emotion and taste

Example sentence:
Instead of going to the van Gogh exhibit, Dan went fishing
and gratified his artistic sensibilities by the gleam of a trout
at the end of his hook.

Did you know?
From Latin "sentire" ("to feel"), the meanings
of "sensibility" run the gamut from mere sensation of the sense
organs to excessive sentimentality. In between is a capacity for
delicate appreciation, a sense often pluralized. In Jane
Austen's books, "sensibility," a word much appreciated by the
novelist, is mostly an admirable quality she attributed to or
found lacking in her characters: "He had ... a sensibility to
what was amiable and lovely" (of Mr. Elliot in _Persuasion_). In
_Sense and Sensibility_, however, Austen starts out by ascribing
to Marianne sensibleness, on the one hand, but an "excess of
sensibility" on the other: "her sorrows, her joys, could have no
moderation . . . she was everything but prudent."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 3 is:

: a roadway or pavement of small closely packed broken stone

Example sentence:
We left the old city with much regret, passing from its
quaint cobblestones to lumpy macadam, leaving our vacation
behind and returning reluctantly to the workaday world.

Did you know?
In 1783, inventor John Loudon McAdam returned to his native
Scotland after amassing a fortune in New York. He was promptly
made road trustee for his district and quickly set his
inventiveness to remedying the terrible condition of local
roads. After numerous experiments, he created a new inexpensive
but durable road surfacing material made of bits of stone that
became compressed into a solid mass as traffic passed over them.
His invention revolutionized road construction and
transportation, and engineers and the public alike honored him
by using his name (respelled "macadam") as a generic term for
the material or pavement made from it. He is further
immortalized in the verb "macadamize," which names the process

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 4 is:

malinger \muh-LING-gur\ verb
: to pretend or exaggerate incapacity or illness (as to
avoid duty or work)

Example sentence:
When Kim called in sick on yet another beautiful summer day,
her boss began to suspect she was malingering.

Did you know?
Do you know someone who always seems to develop an ailment
when there's work to be done? Someone who merits an Academy
Award for his or her superb simulation of symptoms? Then you
know a malingerer. The verb "malinger" comes from the French
word "malingre," meaning "sickly," and one who malingers feigns
illness. In its earliest uses in the 19th century, "malinger"
usually referred to a soldier or sailor pretending to be sick or
insane to shirk duty. Later, psychologists began
using "malingering" as a clinical term to describe the feigning
of illness in avoidance of a duty or for personal gain.
Today, "malinger" is used in just about any context in which
someone fakes sickness or injury to get out of an undesirable

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

My sensibilities were offended by the malingerer whimpering on the macadam. That little tap from my car couldn't possibly have broken her leg.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

...just her will to live.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 5 is:

skulk \SKULK\ verb
*1 : to move in a stealthy or furtive manner
2 a : to hide or conceal something (as oneself) often
out of cowardice or fear or with sinister intent b _chiefly
British_ : malinger

Example sentence:
"I sometimes met with hounds in my path prowling about
the woods, which would skulk out of my way, as if afraid, and
stand silent amid the bushes till I had passed." (Henry David
Thoreau, _Walden_)

Did you know?
Here's one for the word-puzzle lovers. Can you name
three things that the word "skulk" has in common with all of
these other words: booth, brink, cog, flit, give, kid, meek,
scab, seem, skull, snub, and wing? If you noticed that all of
the terms on that list have just one syllable, then you've got
the first (easy) similarity, but the next two are likely to
prove a little harder to guess. Give up? All of the words listed
above are of Scandinavian origin and all were first recorded in
English in the 13th century. As for "skulk," its closest
Scandinavian relative is Norwegian dialect "skulka," which
means "to lie in wait" or "lurk."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 6 is:

pidgin \PIH-jun\ noun
: a simplified speech used for communication between people
with different languages

Example sentence:
Creole, which is now spoken in parts of southern Louisiana,
originated as a pidgin spoken between French-speaking colonists
and African slaves.

Did you know?
The history of "pidgin" begins about the early 19th century
in the South China city of Guangzhou. Chinese merchants
interacting with English speakers on the docks in this port
sometimes pronounced the word "business" as "bigeon." By the
century's end, "bigeon" had degenerated into "pigeon" and
finally "pidgin," which then appropriately became the descriptor
of the unique communication necessitated when people who speak
different languages meet. Pidgins generally consist of a small
vocabulary (Chinese Pidgin English has only 700 words), but some
have grown to become the native language of a group. Examples
include Sea Island Creole spoken in South Carolina's Sea
Islands; Haitian Creole; and Louisiana Creole. The alteration
of "bigeon" to "pigeon" also gave us "pigeon," meaning "an
object of special concern" or "accepted business or interest."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Book (Member # 5500) on :

Hey! I knew that one! And who said high school education is useless? Well... yeah, that pretty much is useless education. So nevermind.

Posted by Evie3217 (Member # 5426) on :

The Word of the Day for August 7 is:

: providing an unambiguous criterion or guideline
especially in law

Example sentence:
While there is no bright-line rule, cost spreads of more
than five percent are considered excessive for certain municipal
bonds.

Did you know?
In the first half of the 20th century, courts began
referring to a "bright line" that could or could not be drawn to
make clear-cut distinctions between legal issues, such as a
bright line to distinguish negligence from nonnegligence. Early
users may have been influenced by the term "bright line," used
by physicists to refer to the distinct color lines in the light
spectrum. Before that, judges were content with wording that was
more prosaic, such as "line of demarcation." In the second half
of the 20th century, we began using "bright-line" as an
adjective. Nonlegal types looking for unambiguous distinctions
in other walks of life took a shine to "bright-line" sometime in
the 1980s.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Try as they might, Congress couldn't come up with a bright-line between soft money and undue influence in political campaigns.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 8 is:

sawbones \SAW-bohnz\ noun
slang: physician, surgeon

Example sentence:
Before going in for his appendectomy, Uncle George jokingly
wondered aloud how much blood he'd have left after the old
sawbones had sewn him back up.

Did you know?
"Sawbones" first cut its teeth in Charles Dickens's 1837
novel The _Pickwick Papers_, when Sam Weller said to Mr.
Pickwick, "Don't you know what a sawbones is, sir? . . . I
thought everybody know'd as a sawbones was a surgeon." By the
late 19th century, the word had also been used by authors such
as H. G. Wells and Mark Twain and was well established in
English. 19th-century surgeons used saws to perform amputations,
and the word "sawbones" was associated with unskillful hacking.
Mercifully, medical technology has improved dramatically since
then (the surgical saws used in procedures today are a far cry
from the primitive tools of yesteryear), but the word "sawbones"
is still used, often in a humorous context.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

And in the last days the sawbones will put down their instruments of carnage and take to chasing a small white sphere, and, lo, their frustration will breed like maggots upon an festering wound, and this shall be to the retribution of all the rightous who have suffered indignities and grievances at their clumsy hands.

-- The 3rd Book of the Apocrypha of Bob 27:9

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 9 is:

oligopsony \ah-luh-GAHP-suh-nee\ noun
: a market situation in which each of a few buyers exerts a
disproportionate influence on the market

Example sentence:
Fewer than 10 automakers worldwide dominate the industry,
forcing suppliers into an oligopsony where the buyers can
dictate prices.

Did you know?
You're probably familiar with the word "monopoly," but you
may not recognize its conceptual and linguistic relative, the
much rarer "oligopsony." Both "monopoly" and "oligopsony" are
ultimately from Greek, although "monopoly" passed through Latin
before being adopted into English. "Monopoly" comes from the
Greek prefix "mono-" (which means "one") and "polein" ("to
sell"), while "oligopsony" derives from the combining form
"olig-" ("few") and the Greek noun "opsonia" ("the purchase of
victuals"), which is ultimately from the combination of "opson"
("food") and "oneisthai" ("to buy"). It makes sense, then,
that "oligopsony" refers to a "buyers' market" in which the
seller is subjected to the potential demands of a limited pool
of buyers. Another related word is "monopsony," used for a more
extreme oligopsony in which there is only a single buyer.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Musicians face a true oligopsony, emphasis on the "SONY."

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 10 is:

propitiate \proh-PIH-shee-ayt\ verb
: to gain or regain the favor or goodwill of : appease,
conciliate

Example sentence:
The locals invited some of the tourists to participate in a
traditional ceremony in which offerings were made to propitiate
the region's deities.

Did you know?
Like its synonym "appease," "propitiate" means "to ease the
anger or disturbance of," but there are subtle differences
between the two terms as well. "Appease" usually implies
quieting insistent demands by making concessions,
whereas "propitiate" tends to suggest averting the anger or
malevolence of a superior being. In fact, "propitiate" often
occurs -- as in our example sentence -- in contexts involving
deities, spirits, or other preternatural forces. You
might "appease" your hunger, but to speak more colorfully, you
could "propitiate the gods of hunger."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

Newbies soon learn that propitiating the Hatrack old-timers is good for one's health.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

You got that right!!!

The Word of the Day for Aug 11 is:

shopaholic \shah-puh-HAH-lik\ noun

: one who is extremely or excessively fond of shopping

Example sentence:
Susie is such a shopaholic that her friends refuse to set foot
in a mall with her on the day of a big sale.

Did you know?

The word "alcoholic" refers to someone who has a serious
medical condition. "Shopaholic," on the other hand, is a rather
playful word that usually suggests mere excess rather than true
addiction. "Shopaholic" first appeared in print in 1983. It was
formed on the model of "alcoholic," which was itself created
many years earlier by combining "alcohol" with "-ic,"
meaning "of or relating to." People evidently saw a parallel
between someone addicted to alcohol and someone "addicted" to
shopping. This is not the first time "alcoholic" has spawned a
spinoff word  "shopaholic" was preceded by "workaholic"
and "chocoholic," both of which first turned up in 1968.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Tami discovered she was a serious shopaholic when she awoke early one morning and found herself sleep-dialing QVC.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

The Word of the Day for August 12 is:

quorum • \KWOR-um\ • noun
1 : a select group
*2 : the number (as a majority) of officers or members of a body that when duly assembled is legally competent to transact business

Example sentence:
The committee lacked a quorum that day, and so was unable to vote on any issues.

Did you know?
"Quorum" was introduced into Modern English in the early 17th century by way of Middle English, where it referred to a group of justices of the peace. From there, the English term can be traced back to the Latin "quorum," meaning "of whom," which is itself the genitive plural of "qui," meaning "who." At one time, the Latin "quorum" was used in the wording of the commission issued to justices of the peace in England. In English, "quorum" initially referred to the number of justices of the peace who had to be present to constitute a legally sufficient bench. That sense is now rare, but it's not surprising that "quorum" has come to mean both "a select group" and "the minimum people required in order to conduct business."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Psychotherapy never worked for Bob because his many personalities could never pull together a quorum.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 13 is:

flounce \FLOWNSS ("OW" as in "cow")\ verb
1 *a: to move with exaggerated jerky or bouncy motions;
also: to move so as to draw attention to oneself b: to go with
sudden determination
2 : flounder, struggle

Example sentence:
The host of the party looked like she was dancing as she
flounced about in an effort to greet each of the guests.

Did you know?
Despite its rhyming connection with "bounce," the history
behind "flounce" is not entirely certain. Its first recorded use
as a verb in English occurred in 1542. Some scholars believe it
is related to the Norwegian verb "flunsa" (meaning "to hurry"
or "to work briskly") and the Swedish "flunsa" ("to fall with a
splash" or "to plunge"). The connection is uncertain, however,
because the "flunsa" verbs did not appear in their respective
languages until the 18th century, long after "flounce" surfaced
in English. A second distinct sense of "flounce," referring to a
strip or ruffle of fabric attached on one edge, did not appear
in English until the 18th century. This "flounce" derives from
the Middle English "frouncen" ("to curl").

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 14 is:

ahimsa \uh-HIM-sah\ noun
: the Hindu and Buddhist doctrine of refraining from
harming any living being

Example sentence:
Mahatma Gandhi directed his followers to adhere to the
principles of ahimsa, insisting that even people fighting for
their rights need to honor life and do no harm.

Did you know?
"Ahimsa" has been part of the English language since at
least 1875, but the word didn't gain popularity in the English-
speaking world until the first half of the 20th century, when it
was recognized as an important component of the teachings of
Mahatma Gandhi. "Ahimsa" comes from a Sanskrit word
meaning "noninjury," and Gandhi's policy of nonviolent protest
played a crucial role in the political and social changes that
eventually led to India's independence from Britain in 1947.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 15 is:

skirl \SKURL\ verb
*intransitive; of a bagpipe : to emit the high shrill tone
of the chanter; also : to give forth music
transitive : to play (music) on the bagpipe

Example sentence:
The bagpipes skirled, the bodhran drummed, the tartans
swirled, and the Summer 2003 Highland Games were ushered in!

Did you know?
Not every musical instrument is honored with its very own
verb. But then, not every musical instrument emits a sound that
quite matches that of a bagpipe. Depending on your ear, you
might think bagpipes "give forth music," or you might be more
apt to say they "shriek." If you are of the latter opinion, your
thinking aligns with the earliest sense of "skirl" -- "to
shriek." Beginning around 1400, that early sense was used of
screeching maids, winds, and the like. Scottish poet Robert
Sempill first used it for bagpipes in the mid-1600s. The meaning
of "skirl" has shifted over time, however, and these days you
can use the verb without causing offense to bagpipers and
bagpipe enthusiasts.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

The wee bairn skirled so loud and long, he almost convinced his parents to abandon their dedication to ahimsa.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

lol!

The Word of the Day for August 16 is:

panache \puh-NASH\ noun
1 : an ornamental tuft (as of feathers) especially on a
helmet
*2 : dash or flamboyance in style and action

Example sentence:
Edmond leaped onto the table with the panache of a
musketeer, and shouted, "Quiet down!" to the unruly crowd.

Did you know?
Few can match the panache of French poet and soldier Cyrano
de Bergerac. In his dying moments, he declared that the one
thing left to him was his panache, and that assertion at once
demonstrates the meaning of the word and draws upon its
history. "Panache" derives via Middle French from the Late
Latin "pinnaculum," meaning "small wing" or "gable," a root that
also gave English the word "pinnacle." In both French and
English, "panache" originally referred to a showy, feathery
plume on a hat or helmet; its dashing figurative sense developed
from the verve and swagger of one bold enough to wear such an
adornment in public. When the dying Cyrano turned his huge nose
heavenward and spoke of his panache, his nose became the literal
and figurative pinnacle of a multifaceted pun.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

The crowd did not, in fact, quiet down and a brawl ensued which left one young man with a broken collarbone and several of Cardinal Richlieu's guardsmen with rather large bruises. Shortly after this rash act, Edmond was knifed too death in a brothel and the panache was returned to its rightful owner a middle-aged muskateer by the name of Henri. As a reward to the comrades-in-arms who recovered his helmet plume, Henri gave them a cask of port. Unfortunately, they decided to drink it all in one sitting and as a result missed their guard duties. This allowed an English spy to infilitrate the apartments of the Comte de Angelou and steal a long look at a sheaf of papers documenting a plot to poison the queen of Portugal with a specially prepared torte that had a yummy but deadly chocolate cream filling. For reasons that aren't quite clear, the English decided to share this information with the Portugese. The plot was foiled and the would-be poisoner was executed.

And now you know the rest of the story. If it weren't for a little panache, a poisonous batch of ganache would have changed the course of history.

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

*wipes tears from eyes*

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

LOL!

Zal...and if they tried again, it would either be their just desserts, or a retorte.

The Word of the Day for August 17 is:

tankini \tang-KEE-nee\ noun
: a woman's two-piece swimsuit consisting of bikini briefs
and a tank top

Example sentence:
After a morning of soaking up the sun by the pool, Ella
threw on a skirt that matched the flowery top of her tankini and
lunched at the resort's restaurant.

Did you know?
The two-piece swimsuit we call the bikini made its debut on
Paris runways in 1946. The word "bikini" comes from "Bikini
atoll," the name of one of the Marshall Islands in the western
Pacific, where atomic-bomb tests were performed in 1946. One
theory of the coinage is that the effect achieved by a scantily
clad woman appearing in public may be compared to the effect of
an A-bomb blast. Another possible explanation is that the bikini
leaves its wearer nearly bare, the way the bomb tests stripped
Bikini atoll. In 1985, the tankini began appearing on beaches in
the U.S., and the word "bikini" was combined with "tank" to
create its appropriate name.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Mr.Funny (Member # 4467) on :

Bob, you need to use all the word-of-the-days from all of the previous days in one post, going back to the first post! Now get started!!!!

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

I think it far more likely that we'll see OSC and PapaMoose modeling tankinis at the next Endercon than that I'll use all the prior words in one post.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 18 is:

waitron \WAY-trahn\ noun
: a person who waits tables (as in a restaurant) :
waitperson

Example sentence:
"You waitrons better start picking up these orders before
they get cold!" yelled the head chef across the busy restaurant
kitchen.

Did you know?
Gender-neutral language has become an increasingly common
phenomenon in English over the past several decades. Nowadays,
it seems natural to hear conversations laced with terms
like "mail carrier," "firefighter," "police officer,"
and "waitron." It's easy to see how the first three terms came
about, but the origin of "waitron," which first appeared in
print in 1980, is less straightforward. "Waitron" is probably a
blend of "waiter/waitress" and "-tron," a suffix that seems to
allude to the machinelike impersonality of waiting tables.
Despite this hint of disparagement, "waitron" quickly gained
popularity. Its gender-neutrality makes it a convenient
substitute for "waiter" or "waitress."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

"I'm not your waitron," momtron yelled for the sixth time today.

Posted by Morbo (Member # 5309) on :

Hardly any joints have the panache to carry off waitrons flouncing around in tankinis.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 19 is:

profligate • \PRAH-flih-gut\ • adjective
1 : completely given up to dissipation and licentiousness
*2 : wildly extravagant : prodigal

Example sentence:
Each political party tried to paint the other side as profligate wasters of the taxpayers’ money.

Did you know?
When a royal record keeper reported the "profligation of the knights" 477 years ago, he didn’t mean the knights were wildly indulging in excesses; he meant they were thoroughly defeated in battle. There’s nothing etymologically extreme there; the Latin verb "profligare," which is the root of both "profligate" and the much rarer "profligation" (meaning "ruin"), means "to strike down," "to destroy, ruin," or "to overwhelm." When the adjective "profligate" first appeared in print in English in the 1500s, it meant "overthrown" or "overwhelmed." By 1647 it had acquired its "abandoned or given over to vice" sense, and by 1779 it was being used with the meaning "wildly extravagant."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 20 is:

chasten \CHAY-sun\ verb
1 : to correct by punishment or suffering : discipline
*2 : to cause to be more humble or restrained : subdue

Example sentence:
The humiliation of having to ask his parents for help
chastened Jim, but made him wiser about spending his money.

Did you know?
If you say you would _castigate_ or _chastise_ someone in
order to _chasten_ them, you demonstrate a good knowledge of the
origin of "chasten" -- all three verbs derive from the Latin
verb "castigare," meaning "to punish." The verb trio share an
initial sense of "to subject to severe and often physical
punishment," but all three are now as likely to refer to a
verbal dressing-down as a physical lesson. "Chasten" (which
arrived in English via the Anglo-French "chastier") can also be
used to mean "to prune (as a work of art) of excess, pretense,
or falsity." This led to the more general sense of "to make more
subdued," although the humility can be imposed by a humiliating
situation as easily as by a strict taskmaster.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by jehovoid (Member # 2014) on :

Chasten the profligate.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

3. And the Almighty Bob looked down on Hatrack and was asorrowed for the Jatraqueros had turned from
their profligate ways and become serious and sedate, expounding mightily on diverse subjects. So he caused
the word to be sent abroad that if the Jatraqueros did not increase the fluff quotient that the Lord Bob would chasten
them and deprive them of his presence and move to a double-wide in the wastelands of Texas and bless them no more
with his presence, and shower them no more with amusements.

4. And the Jatraqueros wailed and gnashed their keyboards. And there was much frantic instant messaging. For they had come
to rely on Bob to interpret their dreams and visions and to uncover their personalities. And while the new graemlins were
amusing, they were like unto pale flickerings when compared to the all-powerful luminosity of the lava lamp that is the Lord Bob.

-- a fragment from the Lamentations of Bob, chapter 2.

Posted by jehovoid (Member # 2014) on :

So is that a translation from the original text which consists entirely of puns?

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

I don't know. My scholarship has focused more on Bobo-Jatraquerian relations. I do know
that theologians have been disputing for centuries over whether puns emanate from Bob
and thus are part of the actual essence of Bob or if instead they reflect the dual nature of Bob
and are thus merely a manifestation of his Bobness.

I don't have much of an opinion on the subject, but in general I do believe that the humor of Bob
is both spiritual and physical. The gnostics would have you believe that Bob exists only as a
humorous presence, but it seems clear to me that Bob's physical presence was quite real (see
for instance my recent article entitled "Bob and Weave: What the recent Jal-Alai documents reveal
about the nature of Bob").

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

Edit: that should be recently found Jal-Alai documents.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 21 is:

: having a reddish glow

Example sentence:
Embarrassed by the surprise party we sprung on her, Joyce
held up her hands in an effort to hide her rutilant face.

Did you know?
"Rutilant," which first appeared in English late in the
15th century, is used in English today to describe anything with
a reddish or fiery glow, such as a sunset or flushed skin. It
derives from the Latin "rutilus," meaning "ruddy," which is
probably related to the Latin "ruber," meaning "red." "Ruber"
itself is a direct ancestor of our word "rubella" (a disease
named for the reddish color one's skin turns when afflicted with
the condition) and "rubric" (which, among other things, can
refer to a book or manuscript heading that is done or underlined
in red). "Ruber" is also a distant relative of several English
words for things that bear a reddish tone
(including "russet," "rust," and "ruby") and even of the
word "red" itself.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 22 is:

poetaster \POH-uh-tass-ter\ noun
: an inferior poet

Example sentence:
"Germaine Greer, Chair Of Judges For The National Poetry
Competition 2000, Invites Entries From Readers, But Be Warned:
Poetasters Need Not Apply" (Headline, _The_ [London]
_Independent_, May 7, 2000)

Did you know?
In Latin, the suffix "-aster" indicates partial
resemblance. In both Latin and English, that often translates
to "second-rate," or maybe even "third-rate." Not
surprisingly, "poetaster" often goes hand in hand
with "doggerel," meaning "verse marked by triviality or
inferiority." "Most of the people who send me thick sheaves of
handwritten or word-processed doggerel," Ms. Greer tells us, in
the _Independent_ article we quote above, "appear never to have
read any poetry, good or bad . . . . Every week poetasters, like
literary flashers seeking to amaze and appal hapless passers-by
with the sight of their grey flaccidities, send their effusions
to people like me." Are there are other kinds of "-asters" out
there? Yes indeed -- we have criticasters, philosophasters, and
politicasters, among others.

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(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

The Word of the Day for August 22 is:

poetaster \POH-uh-tass-ter\ noun
: an inferior poet

Example sentence:
"Germaine Greer, Chair Of Judges For The National Poetry
Competition 2000, Invites Entries From Readers, But Be Warned:
Poetasters Need Not Apply" (Headline, _The_ [London]
_Independent_, May 7, 2000)

Did you know?
In Latin, the suffix "-aster" indicates partial
resemblance. In both Latin and English, that often translates
to "second-rate," or maybe even "third-rate." Not
surprisingly, "poetaster" often goes hand in hand
with "doggerel," meaning "verse marked by triviality or
inferiority." "Most of the people who send me thick sheaves of
handwritten or word-processed doggerel," Ms. Greer tells us, in
the _Independent_ article we quote above, "appear never to have
read any poetry, good or bad . . . . Every week poetasters, like
literary flashers seeking to amaze and appal hapless passers-by
with the sight of their grey flaccidities, send their effusions
to people like me." Are there are other kinds of "-asters" out
there? Yes indeed -- we have criticasters, philosophasters, and
politicasters, among others.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

As much as he tried to match his talents against the true masters, the only memorable lines of poetaster Alexander Thrush's entire body of work are: The garish hue of her rutilant lips/ matched perfectly that of her many zits.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Tired of one rancid versifier after another, the cannibal king called for his poetaster.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 23 is:

burgle \BUR-gul\ verb
transitive senses *1 : to break into and steal from
2 : to commit burglary against
intransitive sense : to commit burglary

Example sentence:
Mike was aghast upon returning home to discover that
someone had burgled his home while he was away.

Did you know?
"Burglary," which means "forcible entry into a building
especially at night with the intent to commit a crime (as
theft)," and "burglar" ("one who commits burglary") have been
with us since the 16th century. "Burgle" and its
synonym "burglarize" didn't break into the language until the
19th century, however, arriving almost simultaneously around
1870. "Burgle" is a back-formation (that is, a word formed by
removing a suffix or prefix) from "burglar." "Burglarize" comes
from "burglar" as well, with addition of the familiar "-ize"
ending. Both verbs were once disparaged by grammarians ("burgle"
was considered to be "facetious" and "burglarize" was
labeled "colloquial"), but they are now generally
accepted. "Burglarize" is slightly more common in American
English, whereas "burgle" seems to be preferred in British
English.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

[ August 23, 2003, 07:27 AM: Message edited by: Bob_Scopatz ]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Bob burgled the bakery to steal a bagel.

Posted by Kayla (Member # 2403) on :

Kayla burgled Bob for his bagel.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 24 is:

loath \LOHTH ("TH" as in "thin" or in "then")\ adjective
: unwilling to do something contrary to one's way of
thinking : reluctant

Example sentence:
As autumn drew near, Patricia found herself loath to leave
the quiet village where she had spent the summer.

Did you know?
Many usage commentators point out that the spelling
of "loath" the adjective is distinct from "loathe" the verb that
means "to dislike greatly." Merriam-Webster dictionaries
record "loathe" (along with "loth") as a variant spelling for
the adjective, at the same time indicating that the spelling
with an "e" is not as common as the form without it. Both words
hark back to Old English, and the "e" ending in each has come
and gone over the centuries -- but if you want to avoid the ire
of those who like to keep the language tidy, stick with "loath"
for the adjective and "loathe" for the verb.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 25 is:

condone \kun-DOHN\ verb
: to regard or treat (something bad or blameworthy) as
acceptable, forgivable, or harmless

Example sentence:
"If you are disrespectful of other students in my
classroom," Ms. Pace warned on the first day of school, "I won't
condone it."

Did you know?
Since some folks don't condone even minor usage slips, you
might want to get the meaning of this word straight. Although
English speakers sometimes use "condone" with the intended
meaning "approve of" or "encourage," the more established
meaning is closer to "pardon" or "overlook." "Condone" comes
from the Latin verb "condonare," which means "to give" or "to
forgive." "Condonare" in turn combines the Latin prefix "con-,"
indicating thoroughness, and "donare," meaning "to give" or "to
grant." Not surprisingly, "donare" is also the source of our
words "donate" and "pardon."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

I cannot condone her loathing for him, but I am loath to discuss the matter with her.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

The media has expressed surprise that I would condone such behaviour, but really what's the big deal? I mean who hasn't gotten high on OxyContin, stolen a backhoe, and driven it down main street while singing Freebird and waving your pants over your head?

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 26 is:

suffrage \SUH-frij\ noun
1 : a vote given in deciding a disputed question or in
electing a person to office
*2 : the right of voting : franchise; also : the exercise of
such right

Example sentence:
The ratification of the 19th Amendment on August 26, 1920,
ended a vigorous campaign for women's suffrage.

Did you know?
Why would a 17th-century writer warn people that a chapel
was only for "private or secret suffrages"? Because since the
14th century, "suffrage" has been used to mean "prayer"
(especially a prayer requesting divine help or intercession). So
how did "suffrage" come to mean "a vote" or "the right to vote"?
To answer that, we must look to the word's Latin
ancestor, "suffragium," which can be translated
as "vote," "support," or "prayer." That term produced
descendants in a number of languages, and English picked up its
senses of "suffrage" from two different places. We took
the "prayer" sense from a Middle French "suffragium" offspring
that emphasized the word's spiritual aspects, and we elected to
adopt the "voting" senses directly from the original Latin.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

The Word of the Day for August 27 is:

hard-boiled • \HARD-BOYLD\ • adjective
1 a : devoid of sentimentality : tough b : of, relating to, or being a detective story featuring a tough unsentimental protagonist and a matter-of-fact attitude towards violence
*2 : hardheaded, practical

Example sentence:
The young tycoon proved that to be successful in the cutthroat world of business you need to occasionally put aside hard-boiled business practices and go with your gut instincts.

Did you know?
As a writer of local color, Mark Twain often used colloquialisms and regionalisms that were unfamiliar to many of his readers. When some of these expressions eventually caught on in the language at large, they were traced back to Twain. For example, he is credited with the first printed use of "blow up" ("to lose self-control") in 1871, of "slop" ("effusive sentimentality") in 1866, and of the phrase "sweat out" ("to endure or wait through the course of") in 1876. "Hard-boiled" is documented as being first used by Twain in 1886 as an adjective meaning "hardened." Apparently, Twain and others saw the boiling of an egg to harden the white and yolk as a metaphor for other kinds of hardening.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

The Word of the Day for August 28 is:

hiatus • \hye-AY-tus\ • noun
1 : a break in or as if in a material object : gap
2 a : an interruption in time or continuity : break *b: a period when something (as a program or activity) is suspended or interrupted

Example sentence:
After the summer hiatus (during which he mostly put his brain on hold), Tony returned to school ready for some serious studying.

Did you know?
"Hiatus" comes from "hiare," a Latin verb meaning "to gape" or "to yawn," and first appeared in English in the middle of the 16th century. Originally, the word referred to a gap or opening in something, such as a cave opening in a cliff. Occasionally, it has been used to describe holes in clothing, as when Laurence Sterne wrote in Tristram Shandy of "the hiatus in Phutatorius's breeches." These days, "hiatus" is usually used in a temporal sense to refer to a pause or interruption (as in a song), or a period during which an activity is temporarily suspended (such as a hiatus from teaching).

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

The Word of the Day for August 29 is:

eighty-six • \ay-tee-SIKS\ • verb
slang : to refuse to serve (a customer); also : to get rid of : throw out

Example sentence:
"I think it's about time you eighty-sixed those sneakers, before they simply disintegrate," Ben's mother informed him.

Did you know?
In the early 1900s, people began using the verb "nix" to mean "to veto" or "to reject." Approximately 50 years later the verb "eighty-six," which may have been created as a rhyming slang word for "nix," began popping up in the lingo of restaurant and bar employees. If you work in a restaurant or bar, you might eighty-six (or "eliminate") an item from the menu offerings, or you might eighty-six (or "cut off") a customer who should no longer be served. "Eighty-six" is still used in this specific context, but it has also entered the general language. These days, you don’t have to be a worker in a restaurant or bar to eighty-six something—you just have to be someone with something to get rid of or discard.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 30 is:

Mirandize \muh-RAN-dyze\ verb
: to recite the Miranda warnings to (a person under arrest)

Example sentence:
In accordance with police procedures, the officers had to
Mirandize the suspect to make sure that he was aware of his
rights.

Did you know?
"You have the right to remain silent . . . ." These seven
words typically begin the notification that police recite during
an arrest to inform a suspect of his or her rights while in
custody. The law requiring this recitation stemmed from a 1966
U.S. Supreme Court decision (_Miranda v. Arizona_) in which the
court overturned the conviction of Ernesto A. Miranda on charges
of rape and kidnapping. The court had determined that Miranda
confessed to the crime without being informed that he could
remain silent during questioning. The list of rights that must
be recited to a suspect during an arrest subsequently became
known as "the Miranda warnings." And in the 1980s, the
verb "Mirandize" began appearing in print.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for August 31 is:

dissociate \dih-SOH-shee-ayt\ verb
: disconnect, disunite

Example sentence:
"It would be naive to suggest that the success of an idea
can be totally dissociated from the personality of the man or
woman who propounds it." (Ronald W. Clark, _The Survival of
Charles Darwin_)

Did you know?
"Dissociate" and its synonym "disassociate" can both
mean "to separate from association or union with
another." "Associate" is from Latin "ad-," meaning "to,"
and "sociare," meaning "to join." "Dis-" means "do the opposite
of." So both "dissociate" and "disassociate" indicate severing
that which is united, but some commentators argue
that "disassociate" is illogical because it indicates separating
and uniting simultaneously. "Dissociate" is slightly older,
dating from 1582; "disassociate" dates from 1603. "Dissociate"
is recommended by a number of commentators on the ground that it
is shorter, which it is by a grand total of two letters -- not
the firmest ground for decision. Both words are in current good
use, but "disassociate" is used more often in the U.S.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for September 1 is:

doxology \dahk-SAH-luh-jee\ noun
: a usually short hymn of praise to God

Example sentence:
During the worship service, the congregation sang a joyous
doxology that reflected the beauty and warmth of the glorious
sunny morning.

Did you know?
"Doxology" passed into English from the Medieval
Latin "doxologia," which in turn comes from the Greek
term "doxa," meaning "opinion" or "glory," and the suffix
"-logia," which refers to oral or written expression. It's
logical enough, therefore, that "doxology" has referred to an
oral expression of praise and glorification since it first
appeared in English around 1645. The word ultimately derives
from the Greek verb "dokein," meaning "to seem" or "to seem
good." Two cousins of "doxology" via "dokein" are "dogma"
and "paradox"; more distant relatives include "decent"
and "synecdoche." The _Gloria in Excelsis_ and the _Gloria
Patri_ are two of the best-known and most often sung doxologies
in contemporary Christianity.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for September 2 is:

ostracize \AHSS-truh-syze\ verb
: to exclude from a group by common consent

Example sentence:
As a result of her penchant for gossip and lying, Jane has
been ostracized by her coworkers and now sits alone in the
company lunchroom.

Did you know?
In ancient Greece, prominent citizens whose power or
influence threatened the stability of the state could be exiled
by a practice called ostracism. Voters would elect to banish
another citizen by writing that citizen's name down on a
potsherd (a fragment of earthenware or tile). Those receiving
enough votes would then be subject to temporary exile from the
state (usually for ten years). The English verb "ostracize" can
mean "to exile by the ancient method of ostracism," but these
days it usually refers to the general exclusion of one person
from a group at the agreement of its members. "Ostracism"
and "ostracize" derive from the Greek "ostrakizein" ("to banish
by voting with potsherds"). Its ancestor, the Greek "ostrakon"
("shell, potsherd"), also helped to give us the word "oyster."

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

He tried to come across as a hard-boiled type, Mirandizing all the old ladies, threatening to eighty-six Matlock viewing in the rec room, dissociating some of the men from their dentures, but the other residents of the retirement center soon had enough of Harold's suffrage (especially when he forced through a bylaw that limited the distribution of pudding cups to twice a week) so during the brief hiatus while Harold was off in Branson, they stripped him of his chairmanship and ostracized him from the association board. An act which led to the murmuring of a spontaneous, albeit somewhat high-pitched doxology by many of the female residents and a hoarse huzzah! (followed by a fit of coughing) by most of the men.

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

I had just decided there was no way to combine the newest four . . . when I saw that Zalmoxis had managed all of them, and several earlier ones. Kudos!

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for September 3 is

1 : having convolutions
*2 : involved, intricate

Example sentence:
According to my sister's convoluted reasoning, I still owed
her \$20.

Did you know?
Convolutions, in the concrete sense, are folded, winding
shapes. (The irregular ridges on our brain are
convolutions.) "Convoluted" and "convolution" are from
Latin "volvere," meaning "to roll." "Volvere" has given English
many words, but one of the following is NOT from "volvere." Can
you pick it out?

vault voluminous volley voluble devolve

The path from "vault" to "volvere" leads (rather convolutedly)
through Middle English, Anglo-French, and Vulgar Latin to
Latin "volutus," past participle of "volvere." "Voluble"
meant "rolling easily" before it meant "speaking readily,"
and "voluminous" first meant "consisting of many
folds." "Devolve" ("to pass down," as in "the stewardship
devolved upon the son") once meant literally "to roll down." The
word that doesn't belong is "volley." It's from Latin "volare,"
meaning "to fly."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

A confession:

I tried to be convoluted on purpose, but it was just way too much work so I decided to simply be diluted. I'm like the Country Time Lemonade of aestheticists.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for September 5 is:

megillah \muh-GHIH-luh\ noun
slang : a long involved story or account

Example sentence:
Mom could never make a long story short --- she always had
to tell the whole megillah in excruciating detail.

Did you know?
Although "megillah" is a slang word in English, it has
perfectly respectable Hebrew origins. "Megillah" derives from
the Yiddish "megile," which itself comes from the Hebrew
word "megillah," meaning "scroll" or "volume." ("Megillah" is
especially likely to be used in reference to the Book of Esther,
which is read aloud at Purim celebrations.) It makes sense,
then, that when "megillah" first appeared in English in the mid-
20th century, it referred to a story that was so long (and often
also tedious or complicated) that it was reminiscent of the
length of the megillah scrolls. The Hebrew word is serious, but
the Yiddish "megile" can be somewhat playful, and our "megillah"
has also inherited that lightheartedness.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

When I asked her to tell me about her day, I didn't expect a gantze megillah!

Posted by Petra'sDaughter (Member # 5539) on :

She proceeded to regalle me with a megillah about the regatta gala.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for September 7 is:

haruspex \huh-RUSS-peks\ noun
: a diviner in ancient Rome basing his predictions on
inspection of the entrails of sacrificial animals

Example sentence:
The haruspex declared that the outcome of the battle would be
favorable.

Did you know?
"Haruspex" was formed in Latin by the combination of
"haru-" (which is akin to "chorde," the Latin word for "gut")
and "-spex" (from the verb "specere," meaning "to look").
Appropriately, "haruspex" can be roughly defined as "one who
looks at guts." The ancient Romans had a number of ways of
determining whether the gods approved of a particular course of
action. Such divination was called "augury," and a haruspex was
a type of "augur," an official diviner of ancient Rome. (Other
augurs divined the will of the gods through slightly less
gruesome means, such as observing the behavior of birds or
tracking celestial phenomena.) "Haruspex," like "augur," has
developed a general sense of "one who prophesies," but this use
is somewhat rare.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for September 8 is:

prolegomenon \proh-lih-GAH-muh-nahn\ noun
: prefatory remarks; specifically : a formal essay or
critical discussion serving to introduce and interpret an
extended work

Example sentence:
The book is introduced by a lengthy prolegomenon, which is
followed by 17 chapters of analysis.

Did you know?
"Prolegomenon" is the singular and "prolegomena" is the
plural of this scholarly word, though people sometimes
mistakenly interpret "prolegomena" as the singular. The word,
which comes from the Greek verb "prolegein" ("to say
beforehand"), first appeared in print around 1652. It has
appeared in the titles of noteworthy scholarly and philosophical
works, but it has never been as common in general use as its
older cousin "prologue." "Prologue" usually refers to an
introduction to a literary work or to a speech addressed to the
audience at the beginning of a play. "Prolegomenon" is most
often used of the introduction to a work of scholarly analysis.
Both words can also be used in a broader sense to refer
generally to something that serves as an introduction.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

I wanted to get a clear look at the results of the exteme opera challenge so I would know which soprano to bet on, but unfortunately I had left my haruspex at home.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for September 9 is:

repine \rih-PYNE\ verb
*1 : to feel or express dejection or discontent : complain
2 : to long for something

Example sentence:
"They saw less of each other, and Robyn was aware that this
did not cause her to repine as much as perhaps it should have
done." (David Lodge, _Nice Work_)

Did you know?
In longing, one can "repine over" something ("repining over
her lost past"), or one can "pine for" something. The two
words, used thus, mean close to the same thing, but not
exactly. "Pining" is intense longing for what one once
knew. "Repine" adds an element of discontent to any longing --
an element carried over from its first sense ("to feel or
express dejection or discontent"), which has been in use since
the16th century. (Washington Irving used the first sense in his
1820 work _The Sketch Book_: "Through the long and weary day he
repines at his unhappy lot.") "Pine" and "repine" are from Old
English "pinian" ("to suffer") and probably ultimately from
Latin "poena" ("punishment"). "Poena" also gave us our
word "pain."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.
(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for September 10 is:

1 : having high and often unpredictable standards
*2 : showing a meticulous or demanding attitude

Example sentence:
The celebrated imperial Easter eggs designed by goldsmith
Peter Carl Faberge are regarded as the ultimate in fastidious
workmanship.

Did you know?
There's nothing offensive about fastidious workmanship, and
yet the word "fastidious" traces to the Latin noun "fastidium,"
meaning "disgust." "Fastidium" itself is most likely a
combination of the Latin words "fastus," meaning "arrogance,"
and "taedium," meaning "irksomeness." ("Taedium" also gave us
our "tedium.") In keeping with its Latin roots, "fastidious"
once meant "haughty" or "scornful" or "disgusting"
or "disagreeable," although those uses are now archaic or
obsolete. The word then came to be applied to someone who was
overly difficult to please or squeamish, and later, to work
which reflected a demanding or precise attitude.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for September 11 is:

agita \AJ-uh-tuh\ noun
: a feeling of agitation or anxiety

Example sentence:
The prosecuting attorney's aggressive cross-examination
seemed to give the defendant agita.

Did you know?
Judging by its spelling and meaning, you might think
that "agita" is simply a shortened version of "agitation," but
that's not the case. Both "agitation" and the verb "agitate"
derive from the Latin "agere" ("to drive"). "Agita," which first
appeared in English in the early 1980s, comes from a dialectical
pronunciation of the Italian "acido," meaning "heartburn"
or "acid," which derives from the Latin "acidus." For a while
its usage in American English was limited to New York City and
surrounding regions, but the word became more widespread in the
mid-90s.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for September 12 is:

bamboozle \bam-BOO-zul\ verb
*1 : to deceive by underhanded methods : dupe, hoodwink
2 : to confuse, frustrate, or throw off thoroughly or
completely

Example sentence:
Tommy bamboozled his parents into believing he was too sick
to go to school last Friday.

Did you know?
In 1710, Irish author Jonathan Swift wrote an article
on "the continual Corruption of our English Tongue" in which he
complained of "the Choice of certain Words invented by some
pretty Fellows." Among the inventions Swift disliked
were "bamboozle," "bubble" (a dupe), "put" (a fool), and "sham."
(Perhaps he objected to the use of "sham" as a verb; he himself
used the adjective meaning "false" a couple of years
previously.) What all these words appear to have in common is a
connection to the underworld as jargon of criminals. Other than
that, the origin of "bamboozle" remains a mystery, but the over
300-year-old word has clearly defied Swift's assertion that "All
new affected Modes of Speech ... are the first perishing Parts
in any Language."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

The Word of the Day for September 14 is:

: tending to vanish like vapor

Example sentence:
For Marcy, the enchantment of the elegant ballroom was as
evanescent as Cinderella's gilded coach -- it vanished the
instant Dudley appeared.

Did you know?
The fragile, airy quality of things "evanescent"
reflects the word's etymology. "Evanescent" derives from the
Latin verb "evanescere," which means "to evaporate" or "to
vanish." English has several other words that mean lasting or
staying only a short time. "Ephemeral" and "transitory" apply to
what is bound to pass ("superstardom is
transitory"); "ephemeral," especially, implies striking brevity
of duration ("fads, by their very nature, are
ephemeral"). "Fugitive" and "fleeting" imply passing so quickly
as to make apprehending difficult ("a fugitive smile flitted
across his face"; "caught a fleeting glimpse"). "Fugacious,"
which we featured as a Word of the Day in July, is used of all
things fleeting and transitory; it's also the least common of
these synonyms.

(c) 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for October 21 is:

trichotillomania • \trih-kuh-tih-luh-MAY-nee-uh\ • noun
: an abnormal desire to pull out one's hair

Example sentence:
Randolph’s affliction with trichotillomania left him with an unfortunate array of bald spots along the crown of his head.

Did you know?
The word "trichotillomania" derives from the Greek "trich-" ("hair") and "tillein" ("to pull, pluck"), along with the suffix "-mania" (from "mainesthai," meaning "to be mad"). People suffering from trichotillomania will routinely pluck hair from the scalp, eyebrows, eyelashes or other parts of the body, usually impulsively but sometimes with careful deliberation (such as by using tweezers). Some researchers believe that it may be a form of obsessive-compulsive disorder. The word for this condition first appeared in English around the dawn of the 20th century (it’s generally thought to have been first coined in French by a dermatologist named François Hallopeau). It has been only recently, however, that the condition has been given significant attention by medical researchers.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Oct 24 is:
brouhaha \BROO-hah-hah\ noun
: hubbub, uproar

Example sentence:
The unexpected arrival of the company president caused a huge brouhaha in the office, sending everyone scurrying to tidy their desks and try to look as busy and efficient as possible.

Did you know?
There is a bit of a brouhaha over the etymology of "brouhaha." Some etymologists think the word is onomatopoeic in origin, but others believe it comes from the Hebrew phrase "bārūkh habbā'," meaning "blessed be he who enters" (Ps 118:26). Although we borrowed our spelling and meaning of "brouhaha" directly from French in the late 19th century, etymologists have connected the French derivation to that frequently-recited Hebrew phrase, distorted to something like "brouhaha" by worshippers whose knowledge of Hebrew was limited. Thus, once out of the synagogue, the word first meant "a noisy confusion of sound" — a sense that was later extended to refer to any tumultuous and confused situation.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

Uh huh, sure. The onomatopoeic explanation makes sense. The "baruch haba'a" one is not only debated by the best entymology site I know of, but makes no sense to me. I use the phrase. To welcome people. Sort of a combination of "Look who's here!" and "Come on in!" It seem unlikely that it would be used by "confused worshipers" -- especially on a regular basis.

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Oct 25 is:
beguile \bih-GHYLE\ verb

*1 : to deceive by cunning means
2 : to draw notice or interest by wiles or charm
3 : to cause (as time) to pass pleasantly

Example sentence:
Austin's ingratiating manner and knowing air beguiled us all, and it was only after he had swindled us and disappeared with our money that we discovered his true nature.

Did you know?
"Deceive," "mislead," "delude," and "beguile" all mean to lead astray or frustrate, usually by underhandedness. "Deceive" implies imposing a false idea or belief that causes ignorance, bewilderment, or helplessness (as in "they tried to deceive me about the cost"). "Mislead" implies a leading astray that may or may not be intentional (as in "I was misled by the confusing sign"). "Delude" implies deceiving so thoroughly as to obscure the truth (as in "we were deluded into thinking we were safe"). "Beguile" stresses the use of charm and persuasion in deceiving (as in "they were beguiled by false promises").

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Oct 27 is:
: marked by restraint especially in the consumption of food or alcohol; also : reflecting such restraint

Example sentence:
My 100-year-old aunt attributes her longevity to her abstemious habits.

Did you know?
"Abstemious" and "abstain" look alike, and both have meanings involving self-restraint or self-denial. So they must both come from the same source, right? Well, that's partly true. Both get their start from the Latin prefix "abs-," meaning "from" or "away," but "abstain" traces to "abs-" plus the Latin verb "tenēre" (meaning "to hold"), while "abstemious" gets its "-temious" from a suffix akin to the Latin noun "temetum," meaning "intoxicating drink." (It makes sense, therefore, that abstemious behavior usually involves staying away from intoxicating drinks.) "Abstain" is the older word, first appearing in the 14th century; "abstemious" didn't turn up in print in English until 1609.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by blacwolve (Member # 2972) on :

I am far from abstemious when it comes to eating, I eat constantly.

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Oct 29 is:
untoward \ un-TOH-erd \ adjective

*1 : difficult to guide, manage, or work with : unruly, intractable
2 a : marked by trouble or unhappiness : unlucky b : not favorable : adverse, unpropitious
3 : improper, indecorous

Example sentence:
After a few obedience classes, Bowser's untoward behavior faded quite a bit, but he was still having trouble with "sit" and "stay."

Did you know?
More than 700 years ago, English speakers began using the word "toward" of "forward-moving" youngsters, the kind who showed promise and were disposed to listening to their elders. After about 150 years, the use was broadened somewhat to mean simply "docile" or "obliging." The opposite of this "toward" is "froward," meaning "perverse" or "ungovernable." Today, "froward" has fallen out of common use, and the cooperative sense of "toward" is downright obsolete, but the "newcomer" to this series — "untoward" — has kept its toehold. "Untoward" first showed up in the 1400s, and it is still used, just as it was then, as a synonym of "unruly," "undisciplined," "unmanageable," and "fractious."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Oct 30 is:

solipsism \ SOH-lip-sih-zum\ noun

: a theory holding that the self can know nothing but its own modifications and that the self is the only existent thing

Example sentence:
After learning about solipsism in Philosophy 101, Dan wondered if the things around him might just be products of his own mind.

Did you know?
Fans of René Descartes credit the French philosopher with introducing solipsism as a major problem of modern philosophy, but the word "solipsism" most likely sprang from a French satire called La Monarchie des Solipses written by Giulio Clemente Scotti in 1652 (two years after Descartes's death). The term wasn't used in English until the late 19th century, when "solipsism," a composite of the Latin "solus" ("alone") and "ipse" ("self"), was applied purely in the philosophical sense. Recently the word has taken on another, more general sense, suggesting selfishness or self-indulgence. Be careful not to confuse it with "solecism," which refers to a grammatical error in speech, or to a breach of etiquette.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Oct 31 is:
palpable \ PAL-puh-bul\ adjective

1 : capable of being touched or felt : tangible
*2 : easily perceptible : noticeable, manifest

Example sentence:
There was a palpable excitement in the air as the children donned their costumes in preparation for Halloween trick-or-treating.

Did you know?
The word "palpable" has been used in English since the 14th century. It derives from the Latin word "palpare," meaning "to stroke" or "to caress." Although "perceptible" is synonymous with "palpable," there is a slight difference between the two. "Perceptible" applies to what can be discerned by the senses in general (as in "a perceptible difference in sound to a careful listener"), whereas "palpable," as its Latin root suggests, applies mostly to what has physical substance or to what is obvious and unmistakable ("the two fabrics had a palpable difference in quality"). If you are looking for a synonym that implies a more physical nature, then try "tangible," which suggests what is capable of being handled or grasped both physically and mentally ("no tangible evidence of UFOs").

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 01 is:
didactic \ dye-DAK-tik\ adjective

1 a : designed or intended to teach b : intended to convey instruction and information as well as pleasure and entertainment
*2 : making moral observations

Example sentence:
Louise reported that the new collection of children's stories was "fun and well-written, but a little too didactic."

Did you know?
"Didaktikos" is a Greek word that means "apt at teaching." It comes from "didaskein," meaning "to teach." Something "didactic" does just that: teaches or instructs. "Didactic" conveyed that neutral meaning when it was first borrowed in the 17th century, and still does; a didactic piece of writing is one that is meant to be instructive as well as artistic. Parables are generally didactic because they aim to teach a moral lesson. "Didactic" now sometimes has negative connotations, too, however. Something "didactic" is often overburdened with instruction to the point of being dull. Or it might be pompously instructive or moralistic.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 02 is:
vicarious \ vye-KAIR-ee-us\ adjective

1 : acting for another
2 : done or suffered by one person on behalf of another or others
*3 : experienced or realized through imaginative or sympathetic participation in the experience of another

Example sentence:
Armchair travelers receive much vicarious pleasure through reading about other people's journeys to far-off lands.

Did you know?
If you act in someone's stead, you take his or her place, at least temporarily. The oldest meaning of "vicarious," which was first recorded in 1637, is "serving in someone or something's stead." The word "vicarious" derives from the Latin noun "vicis," which means "change," "alternation," or "stead." "Vicis" is also the source of the English prefix "vice-" (as in "vice president"), meaning "one that takes the place of."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

(BTW, is anyone actually reading this thread anymore? Or am I talking to myself again? )

The Word of the Day for Nov 03 is:
arbitrary \ AR-buh-trair-ee\ adjective

1 : depending on individual discretion (as of a judge) and not fixed by law
2 : not restrained or limited in the exercise of power : ruling by absolute authority
*3 : based on or determined by individual preference or convenience or by chance

Example sentence:
The decision of where to go for dinner ended up being completely arbitrary.

Did you know?
"Arbitrary" is derived from the same source as "arbiter." The Latin word "arbiter" means "judge," and so it's no surprise that English adopted it, via Anglo-French, with the meaning "one who judges a dispute" (although it can now also be used for anyone whose judgment is respected). "Arbitrary" traces back to the Latin adjective "arbitrarius" ("done by way of legal arbitration"), which itself comes from "arbiter." The English "arbitrary" first meant "depending upon choice or discretion," and was specifically used to indicate the sort of decision (as for punishment) left up to the expert determination of a judge rather than defined by law. Today, it can also be used for anything determined by or as if by a personal choice or whim.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

My responses to this thread are and always will be arbitrary and solipsistic.

Posted by Eruve Nandiriel (Member # 5677) on :

Word for Nov. 4:
"Evenescence"

Pronunciation: "e-v&-'ne-s&n(t)s
Function: noun
Date: 1751
1 : the process or fact of evanescing (a gradual disappearance)
2 : a tendancy to evenesce, evanescent quality, transitoriness
3 : a really cool band

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for November 4 is:

risible • \RIH-zuh-bull\ • adjective
1 a : capable of laughing b : disposed to laugh
*2 : arousing or provoking laughter; especially : laughable

Example sentence:
During the rain delay, the crowd was entertained by the risible antics of the baseball teams' mascots.

Did you know?
"Risible" first appeared in English in the mid-16th century, deriving from the Latin verb "ridēre," meaning "to laugh," the same root that gave us the words "ridiculous" and "deride." The adjective "risible" has a number of applications, describing things that either cause laughter (such as a clown's act) or are simply related to laughter. Your "risible muscles," for example, are the ones that can be used for laughing—similarly, you also have a set of lesser-known muscles (called risorius muscles) around your mouth that help you smile. We sometimes encounter "risible" in English as a plural noun; a person who has the risibles has an easily triggered sense of humor.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Morbo (Member # 5309) on :

Rivka's beguiling yet abstemious didactic efforts to expand reader's vocabulary were viewed by many as arbitrary and untoward, and she often wondered if it was a bootless and solipsistic task that was only the first step towards trichotillomania; Morbo made her efforts palpable to show her that her labors were not in vain, before her patience evanesced and a risable brouhaha of hair-pulling ensued.

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

Wait, does that mean I have to stop pulling out my hair?

Posted by Morbo (Member # 5309) on :

Indubitably.

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for November 5 is:

inchoate • \in-KOH-ut\ • adjective
: being partly in existence or operation; especially : imperfectly formed or formulated : formless

Example sentence:
By the end of our first meeting, we had only an inchoate idea of how we should market the new product.

Did you know?
"Inchoate" derives from "inchoare," which means "to begin" in Latin but translates literally as "to hitch up." "Inchoare" was formed from the prefix "in-" and the noun "cohum," which refers to the strap that secures a plow beam to a pulling animal's yoke. The concept of implementing this initial step toward the larger task of plowing a field can help provide a clearer understanding of "inchoate," an adjective used to describe the imperfect form of something (as a plan or idea) in its early stages of development. Perhaps because it looks a little like the word "chaos" (although the two aren't closely related), "inchoate" now not only implies the formlessness that often marks beginnings, but also the confusion caused by chaos.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 06 is:
diluvial \ duh-LOO-vee-ul\ adjective
: of, relating to, or brought about by a flood

Example sentence:
"Not since 1935 have Houstonians . . . seen the magnitude of diluvial disaster experienced the last few days in the wake of Tropical Storm Allison." (The Houston Chronicle, June 11, 2001)

Did you know?
Late Latin "diluvialis" means "flood." It's from "diluere" ("to wash away") and ultimately from "lavere" ("to wash"). English "diluvial" and its variant "diluvian" initially referred to the Biblical Flood. Geologists, archaeologists, fossilists, and the like used the words, beginning back in the mid-1600s, to mark a distinct geological turning point associated with the Flood. They also used "antediluvian" and "postdiluvian" to describe the periods before and after the Flood. It wasn't until the 1800s that people started using "diluvial" for floods and flooding in general. American educator and essayist Caroline M. Kirkland, one early user of this sense, wrote, "Much of our soil is said to be diluvial — the wash of the great ocean lakes as they overflowed towards the south," in her essay Forest Life in 1850.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 07 is:
scuttlebutt \ SKUH-tul-butt\ noun
: rumor, gossip

Example sentence:
After he retired, Bob regularly stopped by his old office to visit his buddies and catch up on the latest scuttlebutt about his former coworkers.

Did you know?
Nowadays, office workers catch up on the latest scuttlebutt around the water cooler, and when they do, they are continuing a long-standing (although not necessarily honorable) tradition. That kind of gossip sharing probably also occurred on the sailing ships of yore. Back in the early 1800s, the cask containing a ship's daily supply of freshwater was called a "scuttlebutt"; that name was later applied to a drinking fountain on a ship or at a naval installation. Eventually, the term for the water source was also applied to the gossip and rumors generated around it, and the latest chatter has been called "scuttlebutt" ever since.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 08 is:
placate \ PLAY-kayt\ verb

: to soothe or mollify especially by concessions : appease

Example sentence:
In an effort to placate the angry customer, the store manager replaced the defective product with a more expensive model at no extra charge.

Did you know?
The earliest documented uses of "placate" in English date from the late 17th century. The word is derived from the Latin "placatus," the past participle of "placare," and even after more than 300 years in English, it still carries the basic meaning of its Latin ancestor: "to soothe" or "to appease." Other "placare" descendants in English are "implacable" (meaning "not easily soothed or satisfied") and "placation" ("the act of soothing or appeasing"). Even "please" itself, derived from the Latin "placēre" ("to please"), is a distant relative of "placate."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Placate? Placate? Oh, then I guess I look rather silly wearing this stylish pantsuit and mooning over a picture of Spencer Tracy.

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 09 is:
onerous \ AH-nuh-russ\ adjective

*1 : involving, imposing, or constituting a burden : troublesome
2 : having legal obligations that outweigh the advantages

Example sentence:
Christy found driving her sister to ballet practice to be an onerous task.

Did you know?
"Onerous," "burdensome," "oppressive," and "exacting" all refer to something which imposes a hardship of some kind. "Onerous" stresses a sense of laboriousness and heaviness, especially because something is distasteful ("the onerous task of cleaning up the mess fell to the lowest-ranked member")."Burdensome" suggests something which causes mental as well as physical strain ("the burdensome responsibilities of being a supervisor tired her out"). "Oppressive" implies extreme harshness or severity in what is imposed ("the oppressive tyranny of a police state takes its toll upon the residents"). "Exacting" suggests rigor or sternness rather than tyranny or injustice in the demands made or in the one demanding ("the exacting employer required great attention to detail, but rewarded it well").

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 10 is:
accoutrement \ uh-KOO-ter-munt\ noun

*1 : an accessory item of clothing or equipment — usually used in the plural
2 : an identifying characteristic

Example sentence:
Jonah was decked out in all the accoutrements of a tourist, including a camera around his neck and sunglasses atop his head.

Did you know?
"Accoutrement" and its relative "accoutre," a verb meaning "to provide with equipment or furnishings" or "to outfit," have been appearing in English texts since the 16th century. Today both words have variant spellings — "accouterment" and "accouter." Their French ancestor, "accoutrer," descends from an Old French word meaning "seam" and ultimately traces to the Latin word "consuere," meaning "to sew together." You probably won't be too surprised to learn that "consuere" is also an ancestor of "couture," meaning "the business of designing fashionable custom-made women's clothing."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 11 is:
grotesque \ groh-TESK\ adjective

*1 : fanciful, bizarre
2 : departing markedly from the natural, the expected, or the typical

Example sentence:
While I waited in the lobby, the child sitting across from me kept making grotesque faces by lolling out his tongue and turning up his eyes.

Did you know?
During the Italian Renaissance, Romans of culture took a great interest in their country's past and began excavating ancient buildings. During their excavations, they uncovered chambers (known in Italian as "grotte," in reference to their cavelike appearance) decorated with artwork depicting fantastic combinations of human and animal forms interwoven with strange fruits and flowers. The Italian word "grottesca" became the name for this unique art style, and by 1561 it had mutated into the English noun "grotesque." The adjective form of "grotesque" was first used in the early 17th century to describe the decorative art but is now used to describe anything fanciful or bizarre.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

People today have it easy. You can just go into any store and pick up a tesque, cheap. In my day we had to grotesque.

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 12 is:

: a group of nine

Example sentence:
"An ennead of gorillas — four bachelors on one side of a waterfall, a family of five safely on the other — scuff their knuckles as they proudly prowl." (Richard Corliss, Time, April 20, 1998)

Did you know?
To the ancients, nine was a very special number, one often associated with gods and divinity. Legends and literature have long characterized groups of nine as having a special, in some cases magical, significance. Ancient Egyptians organized their gods into groups of nine; even today, their principal group of gods (headed by sun god Re-Atum) is called the "Great Ennead of Heliopolis." The "Ennead" English speakers use in that name traces to "ennea," the Greek word for "nine." "Ennead" is also used generally to refer to other groups of ancient gods. Furthermore, it is the name given to six sets of nine treatises by Greek philosopher Plotinus that were collected and organized by his 3rd-century disciple, Porphyry.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

A friend ennead is usually accompanied by eight more who will eat you out of house and home!

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 13 is:
gumption \GUMP-shun\ noun

1 chiefly dialect : common sense, horse sense
*2 : enterprise, initiative

Example sentence:
"It took a lot of gumption to keep the family farm going," said Jake, "when all the farmers around us were selling out to developers."

Did you know?
English speakers have had "gumption" (the word, that is) since the early 1700s. The term's exact origins aren't known, but its earliest known uses are found in British and especially Scottish dialects (which also include the forms "rumblegumption" and "rumgumption"). In its earliest uses, "gumption" referred to intelligence or common sense, especially when those qualities were combined with high levels of energy. By the 1860s, American English speakers were also using "gumption" to imply ambition or tenacity, but it wasn't until the early 1900s that "gumption" began to appear in English texts as a direct synonym of "courage" or "get-up-and-go." American showman P.T. Barnum also claimed that "gumption" named a particular kind of hard cider, but that sense is far from common today.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 14 is:
flummox \FLUH-muks\ verb

: confuse

Example sentence:
Peter was flummoxed by the directions given to him by the gas station attendant, as they called for him to turn the wrong way onto a one-way street.

Did you know?
No one is completely sure where the word "flummox" comes from, but we do know that its first known use in English is found in Charles Dickens' 1837 novel The Pickwick Papers. One theory expressed by some etymologists is that it was influenced by "flummock," a word of English dialectical origin used to refer to a clumsy person (and perhaps this word is the source of "lummox" as well). By no means is "flummox" just a relic of the Victorian era — by the end of the 19th century the word had become quite common in both British and American English.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

It takes gumption to use a word like flummox on a family bulletin board!

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 15 is:

: of acute mental vision or discernment : keen

Example sentence:
The average time for solving the puzzle was seven minutes, but some of the more perspicacious subjects did it in under three minutes.

Did you know?
"Perspicacious" is similar in meaning to "shrewd" and "astute," but a sharp mind will discern subtle differences among them. All three mean acute in perception and sound in judgment, but "shrewd" stresses practical, hardheaded cleverness ("a shrewd judge of character"), whereas "perspicacious" implies unusual power to see through and comprehend what is puzzling or hidden ("the perspicacious general correctly determined the enemy's next move"). "Astute" suggests both shrewdness and perspicacity, as well as diplomatic skill ("an astute player of party politics").

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 16 is:
conciliate \kun-SIH-lee-ayt\ verb

1 : to gain (as goodwill) by pleasing acts
*2 : to make compatible : reconcile
3 : appease
4 : to become friendly or agreeable

Example sentence:
The negotiating team was faced with the difficult task of conciliating the views of two nations whose leaders disagreed on nearly every foreign policy topic.

Did you know?
A council is "an assembly or meeting for consultation, advice, or discussion," and it is often the task of a council to conciliate opposing views. It is perhaps fitting, therefore, that the words "council" and "conciliate" both derive from the Latin word "concilium," which means "assembly, council." "Conciliate" comes to us from the Latin "conciliatus," the past participle of the verb "conciliare" (meaning "to assemble, unite, win over"), which in turn is from "concilium." ("Council," on the other hand, derives from the Anglo-French "cunseil" or "cuncile," from "concilium.") Other "concilium" descendants in English include "conciliar" ("of, relating to, or issued by a council") and the rare "conciliabule" ("a clandestine meeting especially of conspirators or rebels").

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

One must be perspicacious to effectively conciliate.

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

*snickers at today's WotD, but posts it anyway*

The Word of the Day for Nov 17 is:
hegemony \hih-JEH-muh-nee\ noun

*1 : preponderant influence or authority over others : domination
2 : the social, cultural, ideological, or economic influence exerted by a dominant group

Example sentence:
The nation maintained unrelenting hegemony over its young, struggling colonies.

Did you know?
"Hegemony" comes to English from the Greek "hēgemonia," a noun formed from the verb "hēgeisthai" ("to lead"), which also gave us the word "exegesis" ("exposition" or "explanation"). The word was first used in English in the mid-16th century in reference to the control once wielded by the ancient Greek states, and it was reapplied in later centuries as other nations subsequently rose to power. By the 20th century, it had acquired a second sense referring to the social or cultural influence wielded by a dominant member over others of its kind, such as the domination within an industry by a business conglomerate over smaller businesses.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 18 is:
brusque \ BRUSK\ adjective

1 : markedly short and abrupt
*2 : blunt in manner or speech often to the point of ungracious harshness

Example sentence:
Her curt, brusque manner, often mistaken by newcomers as unfriendliness, is actually caused by extreme shyness.

Did you know?
We borrowed "brusque" from French in the 1600s. They, in turn, had borrowed it from Italian, where it was "brusco" and meant "tart." It could suggest something good when used of wine, but it could also refer to a sour disposition. French "brusque" in the 1600s meant "brisk and lively," and "vin brusque" was pleasantly sharp, effervescent wine. But "brusque" ultimately comes from "bruscus," the Medieval Latin name for butcher's broom, a shrub whose bristly leaf-like twigs have long been used for making brooms. In the end, the good senses were swept aside in English (as well as in French). "Brusque" came to denote a harsh and stiff manner — which is just what you might expect of a word bristling with associations to stiff, scratchy brooms.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 19 is:
florilegium \flor-uh-LEE-jee-um\ noun, plural florilegia

: a volume of writings : anthology

Example sentence:
One prominent critic hailed Tara's third poetry collection as "an elegant florilegium of old favorites and sophisticated new works."

Did you know?
Editors who compile florilegia can be thought of as gathering a bouquet of sweet literary blossoms. English speakers picked up "florilegium" from a New Latin word that derives from the Latin "florilegus," which can be translated as "culling flowers." In fact, "florilegium" initially applied to a collection of flowers, and later to books about flowers, but it wasn't long before it began to be used for (as the Oxford English Dictionary puts it) "a collection of the flowers of literature." And "florilegium" isn't the only English collecting term with a floral heritage; its synonym "anthology" comes from the Greek word for "flower gathering."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 20 is:

*1 : complete in every respect : absolute, unqualified
2 : fully attended or constituted by all entitled to be present

Example sentence:
The U.S. Congress has plenary power to pass laws regulating immigration and naturalization.

Did you know?
In the 14th century, the monk Robert of Brunne wrote, "When Arthures court was plener, and alle were comen, fer and ner. . . ." For 200 years, "plener" (also spelled "plenar"), served us well for both senses that we reserve for "plenary" today. (Our monk was saying that all the knights of King Arthur's Round Table were present at court.) But we'd borrowed "plener" from Anglo-French, and, although the French had relied on Latin "plenus" ("full") for their word, the revival of interest in the Classics during the English Renaissance led scholarly types to prefer purer Latin origins. In the 1500s, English speakers turned to Late Latin "plenarius" and came up with "plenary." ("Plenarius" also comes from "plenus," which is the source of our "plenty" and "replenish" as well.)

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 21 is:

*1 : foolishly impractical especially in the pursuit of ideals; especially : marked by rash lofty romantic ideas or extravagantly chivalrous action
2 : capricious, unpredictable

Example sentence:
Marta tried desperately to convince her friends to give up their cars and computers and return to nature on Earth Day, but it was a quixotic crusade.

Did you know?
If you guessed that "quixotic" has something to do with Don Quixote, you're absolutely right. The romance of chivalry so enamored old Alonso Quijano that he assumed the title Don Quixote and set out to undo the wrongs of the world. The hero of the 17th-century novel Don Quixote de la Mancha (by Miguel de Cervantes) didn't change the world through his battles with windmills, but he did leave the legacy of "quixotic." The word is based on his name and has been used in English to describe unrealistic idealists since at least the early 18th century.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

To be brusque, a Card florilegium would fast become plenary reading for all who wish to experience the quixotic hegemony of our host and favorite author.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

I'd invite you to fawn over my rare orchids and roses florilegium, but I'm afraid you might find the experience too taxing.

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 22 is:
eschew \es-CHOO\ verb

: to avoid habitually especially on moral or practical grounds

Example sentence:
In his stand-up comedy routines, Michael eschews the vulgar language and gross humor frequently used by his colleagues.

Did you know?
"Eschew" derives from the Anglo-French verb "eschiver" and is akin to the Old High German "sciuhen" ("to frighten off"), an ancestor of our word "shy." In his famous dictionary of 1755 Dr. Samuel Johnson characterized "eschew" as "almost obsolete." History has proven that the great lexicographer was wrong on that call, however. William Thackeray found "eschew" alive enough to use it almost one hundred years later in his classic novel Vanity Fair: "He has already eschewed green coats, red neckcloths, and other worldly ornaments." The word swelled in usage in English during the 19th and 20th centuries and is now common enough to be included even in small paperback dictionaries.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 23 is:
demesne \dih-MAYN\ noun

1 : legal possession of land as one's own
2 a : the land attached to a mansion b : landed property : estate *c : region, territory
3 : realm, domain

Example sentence:
Lewis and Clark were commissioned to explore the vast demesne of forests and plains that the United States acquired in the Louisiana Purchase.

Did you know?
Why isn't "demesne" pronounced the way it's spelled? Our word actually began as "demayn" or "demeyn" in the 14th century, when it was borrowed from Anglo-French property law. At that time, the Anglo-French form was "demeine." Later, the Anglo-French spelling changed to "demesne," perhaps by association with another term from Anglo-French property law: "mesne," meaning "intermediate." ("Mesne" has entered English as a legal term as well.) According to rules of French pronunciation, the "s" was silent and the vowel was long. English speakers eventually followed suit, adopting the "demesne" spelling. Our word "domain" (which overlaps with the meaning of "demesne" in some applications) also comes from Anglo-French "demeine."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 24 is:
temerity \tuh-MAIR-uh-tee\ noun

*1 : unreasonable or foolhardy contempt of danger or opposition : rashness, recklessness
2 : an act or instance of temerity

Example sentence:
Kenny had the temerity to talk back to his father, and his impudence got him grounded for two weeks.

Did you know?
When it comes to flagrant boldness, "temerity," "audacity," and "effrontery" have the cheek to get your meaning across. Of those synonyms, "temerity" (from the Latin "temere," meaning "blindly" or "recklessly") suggests boldness arising from contempt of danger, while "audacity" implies a disregard of the restraints commonly imposed by convention or prudence ("an entrepreneur of audacity and vision"). "Effrontery" suggests a shameless disregard of propriety and courtesy ("had the effrontery to pretend to be innocent"). If you're looking for a more informal term for a brash attitude, you might consider "nerve" ("the nerve of that guy!"), "cheek" ("had the cheek to call herself a singer"), "gall" ("had the gall to demand proof"), or "chutzpah" ("the chutzpah needed for a career in show business").

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 25 is:

*1 : composed, performed, or uttered on the spur of the moment : impromptu
2 : provided, made, or put to use as an expedient : makeshift

Example sentence:
After receiving the award, Jodi was urged by the enthusiastic applause into making an extemporaneous speech.

Did you know?
"Extemporaneous," which comes from Latin "ex tempore" ("out of the time"), joined the English language in 1673. About a century later, "impromptu" appeared as a synonym for it. In general usage, "extemporaneous" and "impromptu" are used interchangeably to describe off-the-cuff remarks or speeches, but this is not the case when they are used in reference to the learned art of public speaking. Teachers of speech will tell you that an extemporaneous speech is one that has been thoroughly prepared and planned but not memorized, whereas an impromptu speech is one for which absolutely no preparations have been made.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 26 is:
envisage \in-VIZ-zij\ verb

1 : to view or regard in a certain way
*2 : to have a mental picture of especially in advance of realization

Example sentence:
The mayor's revitalization plan envisages a dynamic new development along the riverfront that includes a park, shops, and restaurants.

Did you know?
"Envisage" has been part of the English language since the 17th century. In the early 19th century, it was sometimes used with the now archaic sense of "to meet squarely" or "to confront." By 1837, the word had developed the sense "to have a mental picture of." In the 1920s, some usage commentators began deriding "envisage" for reasons not entirely clear, declaring it "undesirable." Today, time and usage have won out, and "envisage" is widely used and accepted, though it is slightly formal in tone. The same can be said of its near twin "envision" ("to picture to oneself"), which has been with us since the late 19th century and is interchangeable with "envisage" in many contexts.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 27 is:
cornucopia \kor-nuh-KOH-pee-uh\ noun

1: a curved goat's horn overflowing with fruit and ears of grain that is used as a decorative motif emblematic of abundance
*2: an inexhaustible store : abundance
3 : a receptacle shaped like a horn or cone

Example sentence:
The Web site contained a cornucopia of useful information.

Did you know?
"Cornucopia" comes from the Latin "cornu copiae," which translates literally as "horn of plenty." A traditional staple of feasts, the cornucopia is believed to represent the horn of a goat from Greek mythology. According to legend, it was from this horn that the god Zeus was fed as an infant. Later, the horn was filled with flowers and fruits, and given as a present to Zeus. The filled horn (or a receptacle resembling it) has long served as a traditional symbol in art and decoration to suggest a store of abundance. The word first appeared in English in the early 16th century; a century later, it developed the figurative sense of an overflowing supply.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 28 is:
zeugma \ZOOG-muh\ noun

: the use of a word to modify or govern two or more words usually in such a manner that it applies to each in a different sense or makes sense with only one (as in "opened the door and her heart to the homeless boy")

Example sentence:
"She left in a huff and a Chevy," said Jack, employing vivid zeugma to report of Marissa's departure.

Did you know?
"Zeugma, like the pun, is economical: it contracts two sentences into one . . . it links unrelated terms — mental with moral, abstract with physical, high with low — and thus generates surprise."(Walter Redfern & Basil Blackwell, Puns) "Zeugma," which has been with us since the 15th century, comes from Greek, where it literally means "a joining." The Greek word has another connection to English as well. In the early 1970s, a chemistry professor named Paul Lauterbur developed a technique for producing images of internal organs. He called it "zeugmatography," because it involved the joining of magnetic fields. The name didn't stick (the technique is known today as magnetic resonance imaging, or MRI), but Lauterbur was awarded a Nobel Prize.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 29 is:

1 : full of, actuated by, or exhibiting whims
*2 : resulting from or characterized by whim or caprice; especially : lightly fanciful
3 : subject to erratic behavior or unpredictable change

Example sentence:
The whimsical decor of Mary's home reflects her playful personality.

Did you know?
As you may have guessed, the words "whimsical," "whim," and "whimsy" are related. All three ultimately derive from the word "whim-wham" ("a whimsical object" or "a whim"), which is of unknown origin and dates to at least 1500. "Whimsy" was the first of the three to spin off from "whim-wham," debuting in print in 1605. English speakers then had the whim to add the adjective suffix "-ical" to "whimsy" to create "whimsical," dated 1653. Not until 1686 do we find evidence of "whim," which came about as a shortened version of "whim-wham."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Nov 30 is:
junket \JUNG-kut\ noun

1 : a dessert of sweetened flavored milk set with rennet
2 a : a festive social affair *b : trip, journey

Example sentence:
Just as charges of perjury were being brought against him, the senator embarked on an unexpected junket to Mexico.

Did you know?
The road "junket" has traveled has been a long one, with frequent stops for food along the way. Since at least the 15th century, the word has named various comestibles, ranging from curds and cream to sweet confections. By the 16th century, "junket" had also come to mean "banquet." In this, it seems to have followed the lead of "junkery," a now-obsolete term that, like "junket," also named both delicacies and feasts. Apparently, traveling must have been involved to reach some junkets, because eventually that term was also applied to pleasure outings or trips (whether or not food was the focus). Today, the word especially refers to pleasure trips taken under the guise of legitimate business, with someone other than the traveler footing the bill.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

I think it might be amusing to eat a dish of junket while on a junket.

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

Bob was on a junket last month, and as a result had to throw his best suit in the trash.

Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :

He drove out every weekend to visit his immanent demesne.

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Dec 01 is:
: edible

Example sentence:
The magazine's December issue features recipes for roast goose, plum pudding, gingerbread, and other comestible treats for the holidays.

Did you know?
Did you expect "comestible" to be a noun meaning "food"? You're probably not alone. As it happens, "comestible" is used both as an adjective and a noun. The adjective is by far the older of the two; it has been part of English since at least the 1400s. (In fact, one of its earliest known uses was in a text printed in 1483 by William Caxton, the man who established England's first printing press.) The noun (which is most often used in the plural form, "comestibles") dates only from 1837. It made its first appearance in a novel in which a character fortified himself with "a strong reinforcement of comestibles."

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Dec 02 is:

1 : extremely commonplace or trite
*2 : characterized by insincere or overdone pathos : excessively sentimental

Example sentence:
The movie is a bathetic weeper, one that all but the most maudlin and sentimental viewers will find overly dramatic and unbelievable.

Did you know?
When English speakers turned "apathy" into "apathetic" in the 1700s, using the suffix "-etic" to turn the noun into the adjective, they modeled it on "pathetic," the adjectival form of "pathos" from Greek "pathētikos." People also applied that bit of linguistic transformation to coin "bathetic." In the mid-19th century, English speakers added the suffix "-etic" to "bathos," the Greek word for "depth," which has been used in English since the early 1700s and means "triteness" or "excessive sentimentalism." The result: the ideal adjective for the incredibly commonplace or the overly sentimental.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The Word of the Day for Dec 03 is:
gam \GAM\ verb

intransitive sense : to engage in a gam
transitive senses 1 : to have a gam with
*2 : to spend or pass (as time) talking

Example sentence:
The two strangers discovered that they had a lot in common as they gammed the hours away on the long train ride.

Did you know?
"But what is a gam? You might wear out your index-finger running up and down the columns of dictionaries, and never find the word." So says the narrator, who calls himself Ishmael, of Herman Melville's Moby Dick. We imagine you are also wondering what a gam is, and you're in luck, for you will indeed find "gam" entered in dictionaries today. Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary defines the noun "gam" as "a visit or friendly conversation at sea or ashore especially between whalers." (It can also mean "a school of whales.") Melville's narrator explains that when whaling ships met far out at sea, they would hail one another and the crews would exchange visits and news. English speakers have been using the word "gam" to refer to these and similar social exchanges since the mid-19th century.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by Trisha the Severe Hottie (Member # 6000) on :

I always thought a "gam" was an expression of appreciation for the female lower limb. As in "Look at the gams on that dame".

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

We had a gam about her gams.

Posted by jehovoid (Member # 2014) on :

That's funny. I just read Moby Dick. Book about a sperm whale, and he includes the word "dick" in the title. What a joker.

Anyway, so I just learned today the origin of the word "decimate" and I figured this would be an appropriate location for that post:

quote:
Usage Note: Decimate originally referred to the killing of every tenth person, a punishment used in the Roman army for mutinous legions. Today this meaning is commonly extended to include the killing of any large proportion of a group. Sixty-six percent of the Usage Panel accepts this extension in the sentence The Jewish population of Germany was decimated by the war, even though it is common knowledge that the number of Jews killed was much greater than a tenth of the original population. However, when the meaning is further extended to include large-scale destruction other than killing, as in The supply of fresh produce was decimated by the nuclear accident at Chernobyl, only 26 percent of the Panel accepts the usage.
I got that here. It never occured to me that the root of the word is the latin for "ten," so that it literally means "counting to ten," which is funny when you think that nowadays this is seen as a way of calming yourself down.

Posted by Da_Goat (Member # 5529) on :

*bump* I liked this thread.

The Word of the Day for March 10 is:

swivet • \SWIV-ut\ • noun
: a state of extreme agitation

Example sentence:
The residents of Cedar Hills are in a swivet over the state's proposal to extend the highway through their town.

Did you know?
People have been in a swivet over one thing or another since the 1890s. That, at least, is when the word first appeared in print in a collection of "Peculiar Words and Usages" of Kentucky published by the American Dialect Society. In the ensuing years, "swivet" popped up in other pockets of the South as well. Chances are it had already been around for some time before it was recorded in writing, and by the time it was, nobody could say where or how it had originated. What we do know is that its use gradually spread, so that by the 1950s it was regularly appearing in national magazines like Time and The New Yorker. Thus, it entered the mainstream of American English.

© 2003 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

Posted by skillery (Member # 6209) on :

tau·tol·o·gy noun

A needless repetition of the same sense in different words.

Word used recently by: Jon Boy (twice in the same day in two different threads...wow!)

Posted by Ryuko (Member # 5125) on :

Wow. I have a powerful love for that word and I don't know why...

Posted by skillery (Member # 6209) on :

Kabbalistic gematria noun

The use of numerology to assign mystic meaning to Hebrew scripture.

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

Gematria is not only kabbalistic, and not only used for scripture.

Posted by lcarus (Member # 4395) on :

I am in a swivet over the fact that we have stopped using these words in sentences.

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

The gematria of Icarus (using the transliteration of my choosing ) is 377.

Better?

Posted by skillery (Member # 6209) on :

Overly convinced of one's own superiority and importance; arrogant, haughty, high-and-mighty, insolent, lofty, lordly, overbearing, prideful, proud, supercilious, superior.

Used only three times in this forum, ever...by Ralphie:

Once Again I Am Cooler Than You
Squicky's Tired of Debugging
Why do you guys hate this person...

That word has cool connotations, like having a huge frankfurter hanging over your head.

If you use a word three times, it becomes a permanent part of your personal lexicon. Way to go Ralphie!

[ April 29, 2004, 03:30 PM: Message edited by: skillery ]

Posted by JohnKeats (Member # 1261) on :

Thris thread is so overweening. Twenty-seven pages?? Come on.

Posted by Zevlag (Member # 1405) on :

The Word of the Day for September 10 is:

whinge â€¢ \WINJ\ â€¢ verb
British : to complain fretfully : whine

Example sentence:
She urged her fellow workers to stop whinging about how they were victims of "the system" and to do something to change that system.

Did you know?
"Whinge" isn't just a spelling variant of "whine." They are actually entirely different words with different histories. "Whine" traces to an Old English verb, "hwÄ«nan," which means "to make a humming or whirring sound." When "hwÄ«nan" became "whinen" in Middle English, it meant "to wail distressfully"; "whine" didn't acquire its "complain" sense until the 16th century. "Whinge," on the other hand, comes from a different Old English verb, "hwinsian," which means "to wail or moan discontentedly." "Whinge" retains that original sense today, though nowadays "whinge" puts less emphasis on the sound of the complaining and more on the discontentment behind the complaint.

Posted by Zevlag (Member # 1405) on :

abrogate â€¢ \AB-ruh-gayt\ â€¢ verb
*1 : to abolish by authoritative action : annul
2 : to treat as nonexistent

Example sentence:
An old law that abrogated the right of liquor store owners to sell alcohol on Sundays was recently struck from the books.

Did you know?
If you can't simply wish something out of existence, the next best thing might be to "propose it away." That's sort of what "abrogate" lets you do, at least etymologically speaking. It comes from the Latin root "rogare," which means "to propose a law," and "ab-," meaning "from" or "away." But we won't propose that you try to get away from the fact that "rogare" is also an ancestor in the family tree of "prerogative" and "interrogate." "Abrogate" first appeared in English as a verb in the 16th century, but was preceded by an adjective sense meaning "annulled" or "cancelled" which is now obsolete.

Posted by jehovoid (Member # 2014) on :

I came across this cool word, figured I'd share:

bilÂ·lingsÂ·gate ( P ) Pronunciation Key (blngz-gt, -gt)
n.
Foul, abusive language.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[After Billingsgate, a former fish market in London, England.]

Posted by Tante Shvester (Member # 8202) on :

We haven't had a word in ages!

Foment (foe-MENT) verb. 1. To arouse, stir up, instigate. 2. To treat with heat and moisture.
[<Latin fomentum, warm application.]

Posted by Bob_Scopatz (Member # 1227) on :

I have it on good authority that many of the creatures that attacked Saruman's castle were just guys in rubber suits -- they were foments.

Posted by Brinestone (Member # 5755) on :

Whoa. I had no idea this thread still existed.

Posted by nik (Member # 2114) on :

I needed to use this word last week and I thought I might go looking for this thread. Sure enough .

1. Of or for charity; charitable; as, "an eleemosynary institution."

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