每日一词:forsooth(转自 韦氏词典)


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for April 5, 2020 is:

forsooth • \fer-SOOTH\  • adverb

: in truth : indeed — often used to imply contempt or doubt


“For sure and forsooth, that means savings for you, dear Renaissance-loving reveler, if you purchase your entry to the weekend-whimsical Irwindale festival by Jan. 6, 2020.” —NBCLosAngeles.com, 26 Dec. 2019

“There is a man haunts the forest, that / abuses our young plants with carving ‘Rosalind’ on / their barks; hangs odes upon hawthorns and elegies / on brambles, all, forsooth, deifying the name of / Rosalind.” — William Shakespeare, As You Like It, 1599

Did you know?

Forsooth sounds like a dated word, but it is still part of modern English; it is primarily used in humorous or ironic contexts, or in a manner intended to play off the word’s archaic vibe. Forsooth was formed from the combination of the preposition for and the noun sooth. Sooth survives as both a noun (meaning “truth” or “reality”) and an adjective (meaning “true,” “sweet,” or “soft”), though it is rarely used by contemporary speakers and writers. It primarily lives on in the verb soothe (which originally meant “to show, assert, or confirm the truth of”) and in the noun soothsayer (that is, “truthsayer”), a name for someone who can predict the future.


April 05, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:solecism(转自 韦氏词典)


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for April 4, 2020 is:

solecism • \SAH-luh-siz-um\  • noun

1 : an ungrammatical combination of words in a sentence; also : a minor blunder in speech

2 : something deviating from the proper, normal, or accepted order

3 : a breach of etiquette or decorum


“We meet at the stroke of midday on an autumnal day in his West London apartment, where I instantly commit two sins from the Common list: being on time and being Scottish. My host kindly overlooks this double solecism and has made a jug of what he calls rosé cup….” — Jan Moir, The Daily Mail (UK), 14 Sept. 2019

“He even took private instruction in English, and succeeded in eliminating his worst faults, though in moments of excitement he was prone to lapse into ‘you-all,’ ‘knowed,’ ‘sure,’ and similar solecisms. He learned to eat and dress and generally comport himself after the manner of civilized man; but through it all he remained himself….” — Jack London, Burning Daylight, 1910

Did you know?

The city of Soloi had a reputation for bad grammar. Located in Cilicia, an ancient coastal nation in Asia Minor, it was populated by Athenian colonists called soloikos (literally “inhabitant of Soloi”). According to historians, the colonists of Soloi allowed their native Athenian Greek to be corrupted and started using words incorrectly. As a result, soloikos gained a new meaning: “speaking incorrectly.” The Greeks used that sense as the basis of soloikismos, meaning “an ungrammatical combination of words.” That root, in turn, gave rise to the Latin soloecismus, the direct ancestor of the English word solecism. Nowadays, solecism can refer to social blunders as well as sloppy syntax.


April 04, 2020 at 01:00PM






每日一词:cocoon(转自 韦氏词典)


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for April 3, 2020 is:

cocoon • \kuh-KOON\  • verb

: to wrap or envelop in or as if in a cocoon


Lily got out of the water and cocooned herself in a large beach blanket.

“By the time the United States entered World War I, France and England had been battling the Germans, the Turks and the Austro-Hungarians for nearly four years…. America, cocooned by great oceans, saw the struggle as distant and obscene.” — Wayne Washington, The Palm Beach (Florida) Post, 23 Jan. 2020

Did you know?

Since at least the late 1600s, English speakers have been using the noun cocoon for the silky covering that surrounds a caterpillar or other insect larva in the pupa stage of metamorphosis. The word derives, via French cocon, from Occitan coucoun, which, in turn, emerged from coco, an Occitan term for “shell.” Linguists believe the Occitan term was probably born of the Latin word coccum, a noun that has been translated as kermes, which refers to the dried bodies of some insects that are sometimes found on certain trees. The verb cocoon has been with us since the latter half of the 19th century.


April 03, 2020 at 01:00PM


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April 03, 2020 at 12:00PM

每日一词:pleonasm(转自 韦氏词典)


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for April 2, 2020 is:

pleonasm • \PLEE-uh-naz-um\  • noun

1 : the use of more words than those necessary to denote mere sense (as in the man he said) : redundancy

2 : an instance or example of pleonasm


The grammarian’s recent post discussed pleonasms, such as “past history” and “personal friend.”

“Like most writers, I can be a stickler about language, but anyone who hangs out with me for long enough will learn that I favor a certain ungrammatical turn of phrase: ‘true fact.’ Technically speaking, that expression is a pleonasm—a redundant description—since all facts are, by definition, true.” — Kathryn Schulz, The New Yorker, 19 Dec. 2018

Did you know?

Pleonasm, which stems (via Late Latin) from the Greek verb pleonazein, meaning “to be excessive,” is a fancy word for “redundancy.” It’s related to our words plus and plenty, and ultimately it goes back to the Greek word for “more,” which is pleōn. Pleonasm is commonly considered a fault of style, but it can also serve a useful function. “Extra” words can sometimes be helpful to a speaker or writer in getting a message across, adding emphasis, or simply adding an appealing sound and rhythm to a phrase—as, for example, with the pleonasm “I saw it with my own eyes!”


April 02, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:loon(转自 韦氏词典)


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for April 1, 2020 is:

loon • \LOON\  • noun

1 : lout, idler

2 chiefly Scotland : boy

3 a : a crazy person

b : simpleton


“He eagerly races by local cop Tom … at 300 mph, unwittingly shedding magical blue hair as he goes. He also teases Crazy Carl …, the local loon who no one believes when he insists he’s seen a blue alien. If you didn’t know any better, you’d think Sonic wanted to get caught so he could have a family, friends, heck—a connection with anyone.” — Dan Hudak, The Monterey County (California) Weekly, 13 Feb. 2020

“The third subscription … was Rolling Stone, the best introduction to counter-culture a 10-year-old could ever ask for…. I never understood the political writing, and I distinctly remember thinking Hunter S. Thompson was a loon. But when it came to the articles about musicians, I hung on every word.” — Shane Brown, The Quad-City Times (Davenport, Iowa), 27 Jan. 2020

Did you know?

There are a number of theories about the origin of loon as it refers to a crazy person, its most common current meaning. One is that it comes from loony, meaning “crazy.” But based on currently available evidence, loony is a late 19th-century alteration of lunatic that didn’t come into use until decades after the meaning of loon in question. (It’s still possible that loony influenced the development and spread of this meaning of loon.) Another guess is that this loon is from the avian loon, inspired either by the bird’s maniacal cry or its displays to distract predators, such as skittering over water with its neck crooked. This is certainly possible, and is the origin story favored by some. But the story our dictionaries favor is a bit more quotidian: the current use of loon developed from earlier uses, primarily in Scottish and other northern dialects of British English, of loon to refer to a lout (an awkward, brutish person) or idler (someone who is idle, lazy, or inactive). While that loon, which is from Middle English loun, never spread to British English more broadly, immigrants from the regions where it was used had a significant influence on American English, and it’s not far-fetched to posit that their loon developed into the distinctly American use of the word to refer to daffy people.


April 01, 2020 at 01:00PM