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Weird Word of the Week Weird Word of the Week

Friday 7 May 2021
Ab Vrbe Condita 2774

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05/02/2021



Rhotic (adjective)

Pronouncing all the Rs in one’s speech wherever they occur. Non-rhotics, for example speakers of Received Pronunciation in England, usually drop Rs that aren’t immediately followed by vowels.
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04/25/2021: Gegenschein (noun) A faint glowing patch in the night sky caused by sunlight reflecting off dust particles in the solar system’s plane. It shows up at 180° away from the sun.
04/18/2021: Saponifiable (adjective) Capable of being made into soap
04/11/2021: Keranography (noun) The supposed process whereby a lightning flash creates a photographic image onto a surface. (The light from powerful nuclear blasts can do this.)
04/04/2021: Gride (verb) To make a grinding or scraping sound
03/28/2021: Aphaeresis (noun) Omission of the beginning syllable of a word. Example: “You’ve got a lot of ‘splaining to do.”
03/21/2021: Catholepistemiad (noun) A place to acquire universal knowledge. Coined by University of Michigan founder Augustus B. Woodward (1774-1827).
03/14/2021: Ludibund (adjective) Playful. A kind of opposite to moribund.
03/07/2021: Tughra (noun) An ornamental Arabic signature used as an official seal, traditionally associated with Ottoman Empire sultans.
tughra

02/28/2021: Morcellation (noun) The removal of something, as in surgery, by cutting it into pieces
02/21/2021: Lateritious (adjective) Having the color of a brick, reddish brown
02/14/2021: Promession (noun) Freeze-drying the dead. Technicians cool the body down to -320°F (-196°C), then vibrate it to a powder. A vacuum pump draws out the moisture. Buried, the powder vanishes completely in 6-12 months.
02/07/2021: Cultrate (adjective) Sharp-edged and pointy, such as a holly leaf
01/31/2021: Chiliad (noun) A thousand of something; a tenth of a myriad
01/24/2021: Exergual (adjective) Pertaining to a concavity on the reverse (“tails”) of a coin where an incription might appear, such as a date or motto
01/17/2021: Bistre (noun) A brownish yellow pigment [bistre] made from boiled chimney soot. The ideal raw material was beechwood.
01/10/2021: Resile (verb) To reverse from an agreement, to recant a previously held belief, to shrink or recoil, or to return to one’s original dimension after being stretched
01/03/2021: Fulgurous (adjective) Brilliant, dazzling, or flashing. Fulgurites, for example, are branch-shaped tubes that form when lightning strikes sand and fuses it into a glass.
12/27/2020: Rantoon (noun) Nineteenth century tricycle with a single steerable small wheel in front and two large side-by-side wheels behind
12/20/2020: Pycnostyle (adjective) The architectural quality of having columns very closely spaced — one and a half diameters between them or less (which I imagine would discourage all but the skinniest burglars)
12/13/2020: Autotomy (noun) The ability of some animals to sacrifice a body part in order to escape from a predator. Many lizards can do this; but at least one mammal, the dormouse, also has this talent.
Honoré de Balzac
W. Somerset Maugham
Ida B. Wells
Voltaire
Ben Jonson
Oscar Wilde
Pliny the Younger
D.H. Lawrence
Daphne du Maurier
Herman Melville
Elizabeth Inchbald
<span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:177px;"><i>The majority of husbands remind me of an orangutan trying to play the violin.<br><br><aside>Honoré de Balzac</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:155px;"><i>There are three rules for writing a novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.<br><br><aside>W. Somerset Maugham</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:168px;"><i>The people must know before they can act, and there is no educator to compare with the press.<br><br><aside>Ida B. Wells</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:151px;"><i>Ice cream is exquisite — what a pity it isn’t illegal.<br><br><aside>Voltaire</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:174px;"><i>I do honor the very flea of his dog.<br><br><aside>Ben Jonson</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:166px;"><i>Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative.<br><br><aside>Oscar Wilde</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:173px;"><i>An object in possession seldom retains the same charm that it had in pursuit.<br><br><aside>Pliny the Younger</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:171px;"><i>Europe’s the mayonnaise, but America supplies the good old lobster.<br><br><aside>D.H. Lawrence</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:177px;"><i>Writers should be read, but neither seen nor heard.<br><br><aside>Daphne du Maurier</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:166px;"><i>It is not down in any map; true places never are.<br><br><aside>Herman Melville</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:169px;"><i>Good humor, like the jaundice, makes everyone of its own complexion.<br><br><aside>Elizabeth Inchbald</aside></i></span>

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