Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for December 25, 2018 is:
benison • \BEN-uh-sun\ • noun
“I offer thanks for the little things and the big things, everyday benisons and once-in-a-blue-moon moments of grace.” — Kati Schardl, The Tallahassee (Florida) Democrat, 17 Nov. 2017
“In the second half of the second act, the show shrinks and darkens as Hamilton’s life does. The last song, describing the 50-year widowhood of Eliza, gives an unexpected benison.” — Richard Brookhiser, The National Review, 6 Apr. 2015
Did you know?
Benison and its synonym benediction share more than a common meaning; the two words come from the same root, the Latin benedicere, meaning “to bless.” (Benedicere comes from the Latin bene dicere—”to speak well of”—a combination of the Latin bene, meaning “well,” and dicere, “to say.”) Of the two words, benediction is more common today, but benison has a longer history in English. Records show that benison has been used in our language since the 13th century, whereas benediction didn’t appear in print until the 15th century.
December 25, 2018 at 01:00PM