imprecation \im-prih-KAY-shuhn\ (noun) - 1 : The act of imprecating, or invoking evil upon someone. 2. A curse.
"While everyone assumed Calvin's daily regular statements to be little more than amusing entreaties, in his mind they were the foulest of imprecations meant to bring them and their entire business down."
Imprecation derives from ...Read more
chortle \CHOR-tl\ (transitive and intransitive verb) - To utter, or express with, a snorting, exultant laugh or chuckle.
(noun) - A snorting, exultant laugh or chuckle.
"Kip punctuated each of his sarcastic remarks with his customary, derisive chortle."
Chortle a combination of chuckle and snort. It was coined by Lewis Carroll (Charles L. ...Read more
pastiche \pas-TEESH; pahs-\ (noun) - 1 : A work of art that imitates the style of some previous work. 2 : A musical, literary, or artistic composition consisting of selections from various works. 3 : A hodgepodge; an incongruous combination of different styles and ingredients.
"Johnson's work was a pastiche of dozens of styles and from the ...Read more
supplant \suh-PLANT\ (transitive verb) - 1 : To take the place of (another), especially through intrigue or underhanded tactics; as, a rival supplants another. 2 : To take the place of and serve as a substitute for.
"Brian was slow to realize it, but all of his daily duties were being supplanted by a younger, more cost-effective worker."
coterminous \koh-TUR-muh-nuhs\ (adjective) - 1 : Having the same or coincident boundaries. 2 : Having the same scope, range of meaning, duration.
"As Ronald was fond of pointing out, in a democracy the interests of the people are, or at least should be, coterminous with those of the state."
Coterminous is from Latin conterminus, from com-, "...Read more
palaver \puh-LAV-uhr; puh-LAH-vur\ (noun) - 1 : Idle talk 2 : Talk intended to beguile or deceive. 3 : A parley usually between persons of different backgrounds or cultures or levels of sophistication; a talk; hence, a public conference and deliberation.
(intransitive verb) - To talk idly.
(transitive verb) - To flatter; to cajole.
"As the ...Read more
gravid \GRAV-id\ (adjective) - Being with child; heavy with young or eggs; pregnant.
"Mel was about to ask the woman for help with the heavy lifting, that is, until he noticed her gravid belly and realized the error of his ways."
Gravid derives from Latin gravidus, from gravis, "heavy."
predilection \preh-d'l-EK-shun; pree-\ (noun) - A predisposition to choose or like; an established preference.
"While Franklin espoused a predilection for blondes, all of his girlfriends had been brunettes or redheads."
Predilection is at root "a liking before," from Latin prae-, "before" + diligere, "to choose; hence to prefer, to like very ...Read more
Fenton's DeathS. Elizabeth
Emm and Francine grew up with Fenton. He was their neighbor, best friend and big brother all in one. Fenton thought he loved both his friends equally but one day as a young man he realized he had to make a choice. But what would his choice do to the 3. And then...Fenton died. Fenton's Death ...
scapegrace \SKAYP-grayss\ (noun) - A reckless, unprincipled person; one who is wild and reckless; a rascal; a scoundrel.
"A care-free scapegrace as a boy, Terry grew up into the sort of person lesser men would follow into a fire if he so much as said 'march.'"
Scapegrace is from scape (a variant of escape) + grace.
hoary \HOR-ee\ (adjective) - 1 : White or gray with age; as, "hoary hairs." 2 : Ancient; extremely old; remote in time past.
"While Jeff had considered the company nothing but a hoary artifact of days gone by, he was surprised to discover that they were a very progressive, albeit conservative, institution."
Hoary derives from Middle English ...Read more
convivial \kuhn-VIV-ee-uhl\ (adjective) - Relating to, occupied with, or fond of feasting, drinking, and good company; merry; festive.
"Used to the ascetic table set in his own household, Higgins was totally unprepared for the convivial atmosphere present in the house of his new acquaintances."
Convivial comes from Latin convivium, "a feast, ...Read more
affray \uh-FRAY\ (noun) - A tumultuous assault or quarrel; a brawl.
"While everyone knew that Ken and Sandy were going through a contentious divorce, nobody was prepared for the affray that played itself out in the courtroom on that day."
Affray comes from Old French esfrei, from esfreer, "to disquiet, to frighten."
foundling \FOWND-ling\ (noun) - A deserted or abandoned infant; a child found without a parent or caretaker.
"Expectations were low for the foundling, yet she went on to graduate at the top of her class and became a captain of industry."
Foundling comes from Old English foundling, fundling, from finden, "to find" + the suffix -ling.
corpulent \KOR-pyuh-luhnt\ (adjective) - Very fat; obese.
"Subsisting on a diet of hot dogs, Cheetos, and Twinkies, Jenna's son grew ever more corpulent even as his proficiency at video games increased exponentially."
Corpulent comes from Latin corpulentus, "fat, stout, corpulent," from corpus, "body."
dissimulate \dih-SIM-yuh-layt\ (transitive verb) - To conceal under a false appearance.
"Judith's chronic sadness was dissimulated from the world by her happy smile and cheerful disposition."
Dissimulate comes from Latin dissimulare, "to conceal, to pretend that things are not as they are," from dis- + simulare, "to make like, to copy," from ...Read more
gallimaufry \gal-uh-MAW-free\ (noun) - A medley; a hodgepodge.
"Terry was wont to express her freespiritedness in her clothing which was a gallimaufry of styles, textures, and colors, all merged together into a style uniquely 'Terry.'"
Gallimaufry, originally meaning "a hash of various kinds of meats," comes from French galimafrA(c)e, from Old...Read more
otiose \OH-shee-ohs; OH-tee-\ (adjective) - 1 : Ineffective; futile. 2 : Being at leisure; lazy; indolent; idle. 3 : Of no use.
"Higgins affected an otiose lifestyle that, by all appearances, was impossible to maintain. Yet maintain it he did, for many, many years."
Otiose is from Latin otiosus, "idle, at leisure," from otium, "leisure."
When you say "Thank you" to someone these days, which response are you LEAST likely to receive? "No worries." "No problem." "My pleasure." "You're welcome." "Happy to help." "You got it." "Not at all." "Don't mention it." "It was nothing." "Thank YOU!"
If you guessed "You're welcome," you're right.
This gracious phrase, once the universal, ...Read more
stanch \STONCH; STANCH\ (transitive verb) - To stop the flowing of; to check in its course; also, to stop the flowing of blood from; as, "to stanch a wound."
"The gun with which Jake had been shot was of such a high caliber, and had hit him in such a critical area, that the blood flowed from him rapidly with no evident way for it to be ...Read more
solace \SOL-is\ (noun) - 1 : Comfort in time of grief; alleviation of grief or anxiety. 2 : That which relieves in distress; that which cheers or consoles; a source of relief.
(transitive verb) - 1 : To comfort or cheer in grief or affliction; to console. 2 : To allay; to soothe; as, "to solace grief."
"After her mother had died, all of ...Read more