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Glossary of Word Du Jours

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deleterious
having a harmful effect; injurious
ensconce
to hide or place in a
secure place
rescind
v.:to invalidate; to repeal; to retract
debunk
to expose the falseness of
gerrymander
v.:to set up lines for political
districts so that the party in power is more likely to win an election
dulcet
adj.:melodious, harmonious
asylum
a place of retreat or security
heretical
adj.:violating accepted dogma or convention
desiderate
v.:to seek earnestly, to express a desire
for, to miss
alleviate
to ease a pain or a burden
objurgate
v.:to scold sharply
terse
adj.:brief and concise in wording
punctilious
strictly attentive to minute details in
conduct; picky
extirpate
v.:to rip up by the roots; to abolish or
exterminate; to remove by surgery
apprise
v.:to give notice to, inform
vituperate
v.:to revile, to scold
harshly, to vilify
imminent
adj.:about to happen; impending
zealous
passionate; extremely interested in pursuing
something
ablate
v.:to remove through erosion or evaporation; to become
reduced by erosion or evaporation
antipathy
n.:aversion, dislike
tenacity
persistent adherence to a belief or a point
of view
manumit
v.:to release from slavery
squander
v.:to waste by spending or using irresponsibly
obstinate
stubbornly adhering to an opinion or a course
of action
impunity
n.:immunity from punishment or penalty
interdict
v.:to prohibit, to forbid; to
stop enemy movement by destroying supply lines
prognosticate
v.:to predict; foreshadow, presage
pervasive
adj.:having the tendency to permeate or spread throughout
intrepid
courageous; fearless
fastidious
possessing careful attention to detail;
difficult to please
posit
v.:to postulate or theorize, to assume to be true; to
place in position
enigmatic
adj.:mysterious; obscure; difficult to understand
amenable
adj.:agreeable; responsive to suggestion
bruit (BROOT)
v.:to pass news of; repeat
exemplary
commendable
gloze
v.:to palliate, to minimize, to gloss (over)
dogged
stubbornly persevering
disinterested
adj.:indifferent; free from self-interest
undulate
v.:to move smoothly in a wavelike motion; to
cause to move smoothly in a wavelike motion
martial
adj.:associated with war and the armed forces
diligent
marked by painstaking effort; hard-working
conscientious
careful and principled
relegate
v.:to forcibly assign, especially to a lower place or position
deliquesce
v.:to melt away, to become liquid
assiduous
hard-working
brook
v.:to tolerate or endure
macerate (MAS uh rayt
v.:to make or become soft by soaking; to cause to
waste away (usually be starving)
adamant
extremely stubborn
susurrate
v.:to make a soft rustling sound, to whisper
n.:a whispering sound
audacious
adj.:daring and fearless; recklessly bold
assuage
v.:to ease or lessen; to appease or pacify
disparate
fundamentally distinct or different
fleer (FLIR)
v.:to smirk in contempt, to leer; n.:a derisive look, a
sneer
gauche
adj.:crude, awkward, tasteless
disingenuous
not straightforward; crafty
unfeigned
adj.:genuine; not false or hypocritical
eschew
v.:to shun
usurp
to take power by force
sough(SAOW or SUHF)
v.:to make a murmuring or sighing sound n.:a soft
murmuring sound
rail
v.:to complain about bitterly
omnipotent
all-powerful
crepitate
v.:to make a crackling noise; to crackle
auspicious
adj.:favorable, prosperous, well-omened
prattle
v.:to babble meaninglessly; to talk in an empty and idle manner
cachinnate
v.:to laugh really hard; to guffaw
imperious
arrogantly domineering or overbearing
haughty
condescendingly proud
immolate
v.:to kill as a sacrificial victim; to commit
suicide by fire; to destroy
bolster
v.:to provide support or reinforcement
dictatorial
domineering; oppressively overbearing
jape
v.:to joke, to quip; to make fun of n.:a joke, something
meant to amuse
eclectic
adj.:composed of elements drawn from various sources
wreak
v.:to inflict; to vent, to indulge; to cause
innocuous
adj.:harmless; causing no damage
despotic
characterized by exercising absolute power
tyrannically
renege
v.:to fail to honor a commitment; to go back on a promise
annihilate
to destroy completely
mollycoddle
v.:to indulge, to pamper; n.:a boy who
is pampered; a wimp or weakling
abdicate
to formally give up power
coruscate
v.:to glitter or sparkle; to be brilliant in
technique or intelligence
malleable
adj.:capable of being shaped or formed; tractable; pliable
kibitz
v.:to give unasked-for advice, esp. in a card game
aesthetic
adj.:dealing with, appreciative of, or responsive to art or
the beautiful
parody
an artistic work that imitates the style of
another work for comic effect
babbitt
n.:a member of the middle class who is so fond of its
ideals as to be narrow minded and conceited
decorum
n.:polite or appropriate conduct or behavior
thwart
to prevent the occurrence of
wary
on guard; watchful
troglodyte
n.:a member of any ancient or mythological
race that dwelt in caves; a recluse, a brutish person, a hermit
virulent
adj.:extremely harmful or poisonous; bitterly hostile or
antagonistic
nocturnal
of or occurring in the night
nimbus
n.:a luminous cloud surrounding an ancient god while
on earth; an atmosphere that surrounds a person or thing; a brilliant
light that surrounds a holy person, god, or emperor that is used in
artistic representation to denote holiness; a rain cloud
credulous
adj.:tending to believe too readily; gullible
conflagration
a widespread fire
paramour
n.:a lover, esp. an illicit lover
hackneyed
adj.:rendered trite or commonplace by frequent usage
apodictic
adj.:unequivocally true
dyad
n.:two individuals thought of as a pair
sturm und drang
n.:turmoil; a late eighteenth
century German literary movement in which a person's individual struggle
against conventional society was a typical theme
nictate
v.:to wink
etiolated
adj.:to whiten or become bleached
divagate
v.:to wander; to digress
gad
v.:to wander with no apparent purpose
sashay
v.:to walk, to glide in an easy or casual manner; to
strut; to do a certain dance move in which one foot slides sideways and
is then followed by the other (like a gallop) n.:the dance move
described above; an outing
ululate
v.:to wail or howl loudly
reify
v.:to treat (mentally) something that is abstract as
if it were real
moil
v.:to toil; to work assiduously and continuously
n.:drudgery, confusion
twit
v.:to tease, ridicule in a good humored way; n.:the act of
ridiculing; a taunt; (slang) a fool
burke
v.:to suppress quietly or stifle; to disregard; to kill
someone through suffocation
contraindicate
v.:to suggest that something is
inadvisable (usually used in discussing medical treatments)
perorate
v.:to make a long speech, esp. in
a grandiloquent manner; to sum up a speech
exculpate
v.:to free from blame, to prove to be
guiltless
ideate
v.:to form an idea, to conceive
coquet
v.:to flirt; to dally
predicate
v.:to establish, to base; to affirm, to
declare; to ascribe a quality to (used with of)
tergiversate
v.:to equivocate, evade, esp. in a
dishonorable manner; to desert a cause; apostatize
embrangle
v.:to entangle; to mix up in confusion (also
imbrangle)
roister
v.:to engage in boisterous revelry; to swagger
immure
v.:to enclose as if within a wall; to entomb into a
wall
gird
v.:to encircle as with a belt; to prepare for action
peculate
v.:to embezzle money
defalcate
v.:to embezzle
degauss
v.:to eliminate the magnetic field of something
quaff
v.:to drink deeply; to drink of a liquid freely n.:a drink
bedizen
v.:to dress in a gaudy fashion
educe
v.:to draw out something that is present in a latent
state, elicit, evoke
sully
v.:to dirty, soil or stain; to defile
titivate
v.:to decorate, spruce up, make alterations in
ones appearance
absquatulate
v.:to decamp
imprecate
v.:to curse
bray
v.:to crush into powder
emend
v.:to correct, improve, esp. to correct a
literary text
disabuse
v.:to correct someone; to free from
misconception
discombobulate
v.:to confuse; to throw into a
state of chaos or confusion
homologate
v.:to confirm officially
adjure
v.:to command earnestly
masticate
v.:to chew, to grind with the teeth; to grind
diddle
v.:to cheat or swindle (slang)
dily
a remarkable thing or a person (slang)
confabulate
v.:to chat; in psychology, to replace
fact with fantasy in memory
bowdlerize
v.:to censor prudishly
canoodle
v.:to caress or make love; to persuade through
caressing
vaunt
v.:to brag about; to brag
gallivant
v.:to bop about happily, esp. with members of
the opposite sex
nonplus
v.:to bewilder, to make incapable of speaking or
doing n.:a state of confusion
genuflect
v.:to bend one's knees or touch a knee to the
ground in worship; to grovel
decollate
v.:to behead
comport
v.:to behave (oneself) in a particular manner; to
agree; to suit
ossify
v.:to become bone; to become rigidly conventional,
to mold into a conventional pattern
niggle
v.:to be obsessed with trivialities; to quibble, to
constantly find fault with
arrogate
v.:to appropriate without right, to make undue
claim to, assume; to appropriate for another in an unwarranted manner
commove
v.:to agitate; to move violently
excoriate
v.:to abrade, to wear the skin off; to
denounce scathingly
philippic
n.:tirade, an attack
serif
n.:those little lines that are used in printing on the
end of broad strokes used to form the lines of a letter
empiricism
n.:the view that experience is the only
valid source of knowledge; a way of practicing medicine in which all
theory is disregarded and only practical experience is used; quackery
pleonasm
n.:the use of an excess of words to express an
idea when only a few words would make the same statement clear to
anyone who could see with his own eyes; superfluity
trope
n.:the use of a word in a figurative sense, a figure of
speech
avatar
n.:an archetype; a temporary incarnation of a
continuing entity; the embodiment of a Hindu deity, esp. Vishnu
gymnosophist
n.:a member of an ancient Hindu sect
that wore no clothes and meditated a lot
farrago
n.:a medley, a mixture
omphaloskepsis
n.:a meditation on one's navel
practiced by Eastern mystics to achieve mystical fulfillment
nostrum
n.:a medicine, made up of secret
ingredients, whose efficacy is in question, and is usually prepared by the
person selling it; a panacea
cachet
n.:a mark or quality of distinction or
authenticity; prestige; an indication of approval
parlance
n.:a manner of speaking, diction, idiom,
phraseology; a speech, an instance of speaking
epiphany
n.:a manifestation of God or other divine
being; a sudden understanding of the essential meaning of something
ombudsman
n.:a man who mediates
settlements between aggrieved parties, esp. representing people against the
government; a mediator
sesquipedalian
n.:a long word, or one with many
syllables adj.:given to using long words
juggernaut
n.:a massive unstoppable
object that crushes anything in its path
ruck
n.:a mass, a throng, a crowd; the group of horses left
behind in a race, or people who are not distinguishable as opposed to their
leader
palaver
n.:a long meeting or conference; idle chitchat;
talk meant to charm v.:to cajole, to wheedle; to partake of idle chitchat
screed
n.:a long and monotonous tirade or a long letter
grig
n.:a lively person
dada
n.:a literary and artistic movement (1916-1923) in Europe
that thrived on absurdity, flouting conventional artistic values
portmanteau
n.:a large suitcase; a portmanteau word is a
word made from two other words by combining sounds; e.g. smog
beguine
n.:a kind of popular dance, associated
with Martinique; adj.:syncopated beat
sinecure
n.:a job or position that pays
a salary but requires no work
nimrod
n.:a hunter
tor
n.:a high rocky hill or pile of rocks
chirr
n.:a harsh sound similar to that made by crickets.
nebbish
an offensive term that deliberately insults somebody’s courage, personality, and initiative (insult)
gemeinschaft
n.:a group with similar tastes or a strong
sense of identity
gestalt
n.:a group or configuration whose individual parts
cannot stand alone, nor can they be understood as simply the summation
of the elements
claque
n.:a group of people paid to applaud during a performance;
a group of obsequious admirers
coffle
n.:a group of animals or prisoners chained in a line
puce
n.:a gray brownish purple
bonhomie
n.:a genial disposition; a
genial atmosphere
mercurial
quick and changeable in mood
dilettante
n.:one with an amateurish or superficial interest in the
arts or a branch of knowledge
syncretism
n.:a fusion of differing systems of
belief or philosophy
syllogism
n.:a form of logic in which major and minor
premises are made, and from them a conclusion is drawn; the process of
deduction; a crafty or specious argument
coxcomb
n.:a fop; a self-satisfied dandy
schlemiel
n.:a foolish, unlucky, clumsy wimp
marplot
n.:a foolish meddler who causes a plot to fail
myrmidon
n.:a follower who faithfully obeys orders
without asking questions
minx
n.:a flirtatious young woman or girl
mulct
n.:a fine; a penalty v.:to fine; to swindle, to bleed
metonymy
n.:a figure of speech in which a word is
substituted for a related word with which it is associated
canard
n.:a false, intentionally misleading story
jactitation
n.:a false boasting or claim, esp. one
that hurts others; a twitching of the body or its parts
homunculus
n.:a dwarf, a small human; a tiny human
believed by early biologists to live in a sperm cell
oubliette
n.:a dungeon which has only one exit, a trap door
in its roof
nepenthe
n.:a drug or something else that helps someone
forget sorrow or pain
luftmensch
n.:a dreamer; a person who is impractical
pettifogger
n.:a disreputable lawyer who works mainly
on petty cases; one who worries over trivial details
imbroglio
n.:a difficult situation; a complicated
disagreement; a confused mass
argot
n.:a dialect of a particular group
charybdis
n.:a destructive hazard
cuckold
n.:a derisive word for a man whose wife is
unfaithful; v.:to make into a cuckold
fop
n.:a dandy, coxcomb, a man overly concerned with (and usually
vain about) his manners and clothes
diadem
n.:a crown that symbolizes royalty; royal power;
v.:to adorn with a diadem
bower
n.:a cottage or abode; a shelter in a garden made of tree
limbs
cognoscente
n.:a connoisseur;
one with refined taste, esp. in the fine arts
mountebank
n.:a conman who sells false medicines and
uses jokes or tricks to attract customers; an impostor or charlatan
trade-last
n.:a compliment that one has overheard and is
willing to trade to a person if that person will repeat a favorable
remark made about oneself
weltanschauung
n.:a complete philosophy of the
universe, world view
votary
n.:a committed worshiper; a zealously devoted
person; an enthusiast
dissonance
n.:a combination of sounds that is harsh;
discord; discrepancy; strife
caryatid
column in the shape of a draped female figure supporting a structure such as the frieze or porch of a classical Greek temple
demimonde
n.:a class of kept women or other woman of
lower social standing; a group with marginal success or respectability
gobbet
n.:a chunk or piece, esp. of raw flesh; a lump, or
morsel; a mouthful
hobson's choice
n.:a choice where one must take what
is offered or must take nothing at all
wunderkind
n.:a child with exceptional talent who
becomes famous at an early age, a prodigy
pablum
n.:Trite or simplistic writing, speech, or concepts; a
cereal for infants patented in 1932; something made palatable
ailurophile
n.:a cat lover
quidnunc
n.:a busybody, one who needs to know everything
tome
n.:a book, esp. a large, heavy scholarly book
incunabula
n.:a book from before the invention
of the printing press (1501); anything in its infancy
hagiography
n.:a biography of
saints; a biography that idealizes or worships its subjec
tyro
n.:a beginner, one who understands the basics but lacks
any experience
bastinado
n.:a beating; a form of punishment in which
a person is hit on the soles of his feet with a stick
bibelot
n.:a bauble, a small decorative
object; a finely crafted miniature book
hootenanny
n.:a "thingamajig"; an informal jam session
of singers with participation from the audience
schlimazel
n.:a "born loser," an unlucky simp
leitmotif
n.:(music) a repeating theme
associated with a particular character (in Wagnerian opera); a dominant
and recurring theme
demesne
n.:possessed legally; land attached to a home or
estate; a region; a realm
fungible
)adj.:able to replace something of equal value,
e.g. a quantity of grain that can replace the same amount;
interchangeable
moot
n.:(law) a hypothetical case or trial used as an exercise;
<I>v.</I> to discuss, to broach adj.:subject to debate; of no legal
significance; of no importance, made academic
nadir
n.:(astronomy) the point diametrically opposed to the
zenith, directly below the observer; the lowest point
weltschmerz
n.:world weariness
verbiage
n.:wordiness, too many words for the purpose; how
words are used to express something, diction, wording
glabrous
adj.:without hair; smooth
pace
prep.:with deference to
sapient
adj.:wise, sagacious, shrewd
feral
adj.:wild by nature; tame animals whose
descendants have become wild; like a wild animal
synesthesia
n.:when one sense informs the other (a
sound makes one see color); a description of one sense with a term used
in another sense (loud pattern)

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