Monday, March 02, 2009

February '09 List of "Today's Word"

For the past few months on Twitter I've been posting "Today's Word." These beauties come from my file of words I've collected over the years. At the beginning of each month here I'll post the previous month's words for posterity. I started back in November, so I'll post back lists mid-month until we catch up. By the way, if you come across a cool word, do email it to me. I may use it for a Today's Word tweet.

Remember these are Twitter definitions, which means they've had to keep under a certain number of characters. In my Today's Word tweets I add at the end: "(Creative sentence, anyone?)." I invite the same of you today. How about a creative sentence using one of these words, or two or three? Anyone writing a sentence with four or more gets an F&F high five.

My favorites from this list are legerdemain, Potemkin village, schadenfraude, and halcyon. The legend behind Potemkin village is interesting and lends an appreciation for the meaning of the phrase. See Wikipedia.

FULSOME (FOOL-sum)--Adj. Offensively excessive or insincere; loathsome, disgusting.

ABLUTION (ab-LOO-shun)--Noun. Cleansing of the body, usually used with a religious connotation.

CAPACIOUS (kuh-PAY-shus)--Adj. Spacious, roomy. Able to hold a large quantity.

ENNUI (on-WEE)--Noun. Feeling of weariness & dissatisfaction; languor or emptiness of spirit.

FULGENT (FOOl-junt)--Adj. Shining brilliantly.

IMPECUNIOUS (im-peh-KYU-nyus)--Adj. Penniless, usually habitually.

RIPOST (RIH-post)--Noun. A quick retort; a retaliatory maneuver or measure.

SPAVINED (SPAV-und)--Adj. Afflicted with a stiffening or enlargement of the joints.

VISCID (VIS-id)--Adj. Thick & adhesive, referring to fluid; covered with a sticky or clammy coating.

ABNEGATION (ab-nuh-GA-shun)--Noun. Renunciation or denial; self denial of something one desires.

BILDUNGSROMAN (BIL-doongks-ro-mahn)--Noun. A novel about the moral/psychological growth of the main character.

CERISE (suh-REEZ)--Noun. Deep to vivid purplish red. (French = cherry.)

EFFETE (i-FEET)--Adj. Exhausted of vitality/worn out; characterized by self-indulgence or decadence.

GRAVID (GRAV-id)--Adj. Pregnant/full of eggs; awaiting/indicating the approach of something ominous.

LASSITUDE (LASS-uh-tood)--Noun. A state of exhaustion.

SCABROUS (SCAB-rus)--Adj. Difficult to handle tactfully; rough to the touch; reprehensible or salacious

POTEMKIN VILLAGE (puh-TEM-kun VIL-ij)--Noun. Impressive facade designed to hide an undesirable fact or condition.

HOMUNCULUS (ho-MUNG-kyu-lus)--Noun. A diminutive man; a pygmy.

IMMURE (i-MYUR)--Verb. To enclose within, or as if within walls.

LEGERDEMAIN (lu-jur-duh-MAN)--Noun. Sleight of hand; deception or trickery.

PRURITIS (proo-RI-tus)--Excessive itching due to nerve ending irritation or psychogenic causes.

SERRIED (SER-eed)--Adj. Pressed together; precisely coherent & concise; marred by ridges.

INTAGLIO (in-TALL-yo)--Noun. A figure/design engraved in a hard surface such as stone.

JAPERY (JAY-puh-ree)--Noun. Jesting talk, joking.

ODALISQUE (O-duh-lisk)--Noun. Female slave or concubine in a harem.

SCHADENFREUDE (SHAHD-un-froi-duh)--Noun. The act of enjoying/rejoicing over the misfortunes of others.

HALCYON (HAL-see-on)--Noun: Mythical bird who calmed seas/weather; Adj.: Calm/tranquil; golden (as in halcyon years).

OFFAL (AWE-ful)--Noun. Waste parts, esp. in butchering an animal; refuse, rubbish.

Read March '09


Anonymous said...

I've seen these on Twitter....they are always interesting. There are some crazy words out there.


Anonymous said...

So... should I expect an extra heavy does of legerdemain in your next book?

Lisa M. Collins said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lisa M. Collins said...

I think that my favorite one was SCHADENFREUDE.

I plan on using the word liberally tonight as my son and I watch our regular sports program. He is a budding writer who also loves new words.

Thanks and Blessings,

Anonymous said...

Okay. Here goes!

The bildungsroman immured its pages, the story of the effete odalisque's capacious ablution.

That's six!

I was in your classes and workshops at the Christian Writers Guild. The one with the first page that wasn't a first page! I'm still learning, but actually, this was fun!


~ Brandilyn Collins said...


Bonnie--waytago on cramming those words into one sentence. Try saying that one fast three times.

Domino said...

Okay, so this won't be the first sentence of my new novel, but I DID use ten new words. :)

The gravid odalisque, immured within the capacious prison, found the impecunious homunculus's japery fulsome, but her current state of lassitude prevented her from expressing the expected ripost.

In other words,
The pregnant female slave, enclosed within the spacious prison, found the penniless pygmy's joking disugusting, but her current state of exhaustion prevented her from expressing the expected retort.

~ Brandilyn Collins said...

Whoa, Domino, way to go, girl! I dare anybody to top 10 words in one sentence.

Anonymous said...

May I suggest vertiginous?

~ Brandilyn Collins said...

dsmith77, thanks for the word!