每日一词:quiescent(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for August 14, 2020 is:

quiescent • \kwy-ESS-unt\  • adjective

1 : marked by inactivity or repose : tranquilly at rest

2 : causing no trouble or symptoms

Examples:

“‘Inflation‘ means a rise in the general level of prices of goods and services, either at the consumer or producer level. It certainly is dormant or quiescent right now.” — Edward Lotterman, The St. Paul (Minnesota) Press, 28 July 2019

“Since the sequencing of the human genome in 2000, cancer therapies have moved closer toward personalized medicine—tailoring treatments to an individual’s genetic fingerprint or DNA—to help predict responses to therapy or to flag differences between aggressive and quiescent disease.” — Susan Jenks, Florida Today (Brevard County, Florida), 1 Oct. 2015

Did you know?

Quiescent won’t cause you any pain, and neither will its synonyms latent, dormant, and potential—at least not immediately. All four words mean “not now showing signs of activity or existence.” Latent usually applies to something that has not yet come forth but may emerge and develop, as in “a latent talent for opera singing.” Dormant implies a state of inactivity similar to sleep, as in “their passions lay dormant.” Potentia­l applies to what may or may not come to be. “A potential disaster” is a typical example. Quiescent, which traces to Latin quiēscere (meaning “to rest” or “to be quiet”), often suggests a temporary cessation of activity, as in “a quiescent disease” or “a summer resort quiescent in wintertime.”


Lake桑

August 14, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:catch-22(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for August 13, 2020 is:

catch-22 • \KATCH-twen-tee-TOO\  • noun

1 : a problematic situation for which the only solution is denied by a circumstance inherent in the problem or by a rule; also : the circumstance or rule that denies a solution

2 a : an illogical, unreasonable, or senseless situation

b : a measure or policy whose effect is the opposite of what was intended

c : a situation presenting two equally undesirable alternatives

3 : a hidden difficulty or means of entrapment : catch

Examples:

Following her graduation from college, Kelsey struggled with the classic job-seeker’s catch-22: how to acquire work experience in her chosen field without already having a job in that field.

“Yet this week France stood firm on its ban, which prohibits the wearing of clothing intended to hide the face in public spaces, despite the fact that masks are now being required on public transportation and in high schools…. The result is a Catch-22. Those who do not wear a mask can be fined, as can those who violate the face-covering law.” — Lou Stoppard, The New York Times, 19 May 2020

Did you know?

Catch-22 originated as the title of a 1961 novel by Joseph Heller. (Heller had originally planned to title his novel Catch-18, but the publication of Leon Uris’s Mila 18 persuaded him to change the number.) The novel’s catch-22 was as follows: a combat pilot was crazy by definition (he would have to be crazy to fly combat missions) and since army regulations stipulated that insanity was justification for grounding, a pilot could avoid flight duty by simply asking, but if he asked, he was demonstrating his sanity (anyone who wanted to get out of combat must be sane) and had to keep flying. Catch-22 soon entered the language as the label for any irrational, circular, and impossible situation.


Lake桑

August 13, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:yaw(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for August 12, 2020 is:

yaw • \YAW\  • verb

1 a of a ship : to deviate erratically from a course (as when struck by a heavy sea); especially : to move from side to side

b of an airplane, spacecraft, or projectile : to turn by angular motion about the vertical axis

2 : to change from one to another repeatedly : alternate

Examples:

“A crane had been brought in to lift the submersible from the truck onto the raft.… Even with its heavy load the raft pitched and yawed as it was towed along.” — Clive Cussler and Paul Kemprecos, Blue Gold, 2000

“All told, even as the U.S. GDP has grown, our air and water have become cleaner. And while policies yawed between Democratic and Republican administrations, the long-term trend has been toward stronger and better controls that have not, despite the dire warnings from the pro-business sector, crippled the economy.” — editorial, The Los Angeles Times, 22 Apr. 2020

Did you know?

In the heyday of large sailing ships, numerous nautical words appeared on the horizon. Yaw is one such word. Its origin isn’t exactly known, but it began turning up in print in the 16th century, first as a noun (meaning “movement off course” or “side to side movement”) and then as a verb. For centuries, it remained a sailing word—often alongside pitch (“to have the front end rise and fall”)—with occasional extended use as a synonym of the verb alternate. When the era of airplane flight dawned, much of the vocabulary of sailing found new life in aeronautics, and “yawing” was no longer confined to the sea. Nowadays, yaw, pitch, and roll are just as likely to be used by pilots and rocket scientists to describe the motion of their crafts.


Lake桑

August 12, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:malaise(转自 韦氏词典)

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Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for August 11, 2020 is:

malaise • \muh-LAYZ\  • noun

1 : an indefinite feeling of debility or lack of health often indicative of or accompanying the onset of an illness

2 : a vague sense of mental or moral ill-being

Examples:

“Nothing can make you forget the malaise of social distancing like the pain of being a teenager.” — Ariel Shapiro, Forbes, 19 Apr. 2020

“While the bats’ social distancing could possibly limit a pathogen’s spread, Stockmaier doesn’t think these isolating behaviours have evolved to protect other bats. Instead, he says they may be a consequence of the bats’ malaise and lethargy from feeling ill.” — Jake Buehler, New Scientist, 6 May 2020

Did you know?

Malaise, which ultimately traces back to Old French, has been part of English since the 18th century. One of its most notable uses, however, came in 1979—well, sort of. U.S. President Jimmy Carter never actually used the word in his July 15 televised address, but it became known as the “malaise speech” all the same. In the speech, Carter described the U.S. as a nation facing a “crisis of confidence” and rife with “paralysis and stagnation and drift.” He spoke of a “national malaise” a few days later, and it’s not hard to see why the “malaise” name stuck. The speech was praised by some and criticized by others, but whatever your politics, it remains a vivid illustration of the meaning of malaise.


Lake桑

August 11, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:vivacious(转自 韦氏词典)

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Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for August 10, 2020 is:

vivacious • \vuh-VAY-shus\  • adjective

: lively in temper, conduct, or spirit : sprightly

Examples:

The host was a vivacious woman with a knack for making people feel comfortable.

Totoro, the story of two young girls and the wood spirits they befriend, is vivacious and warmhearted, trafficking in the everyday magic and fertile imagination of childhood.” — Jason Bailey, The New York Times, 5 June 2020

Did you know?

It’s no surprise that vivacious means “full of life,” since it can be traced back to the Latin verb vivere, meaning “to live.” The word was created around the mid-17th century using vivax, a vivere derivative meaning “long-lived, vigorous, or high-spirited.” Other descendants of vivere in English include survive, revive, and victual—all of which came to life during the 15th century—and vivid and convivial, both of which surfaced around the same time as vivacious. Somewhat surprisingly, the word live is not related; it comes to us from the Old English word libban.


Lake桑

August 10, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:ferret(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for August 9, 2020 is:

ferret • \FAIR-ut\  • verb

1 : to hunt game with ferrets

2 : to drive out of a hiding place

3 : to find and bring to light by searching — usually used with out

Examples:

“Quarantining was invented during the first wave of bubonic plague in the 14th century, but it was deployed more systematically during the Great Plague [of London, 1665-1666]. Public servants called searchers ferreted out new cases of plague, and quarantined sick people along with everyone who shared their homes.'” — Annalee Newitz, The New York Times, 29 Mar. 2020

“For more than 40 years, journalist Robert Fisk has reported on some of the most violent and divisive conflicts in the world. Yung Chang’s This Is Not a Movie captures Fisk in action—feet on the ground, notebook in hand, as he travels into landscapes devastated by war, ferreting out the facts and firing reports back home to reach an audience of millions.” — Craig Thornton, WWNYtv.com (Watertown, New York), 29 June 2020

Did you know?

Since the 14th century, English speakers have used ferret as the name of a small domesticated animal of the weasel family. The word came to us by way of Anglo-French and can be traced back to Latin fur, meaning “thief.” These days ferrets are often kept as pets, but previously they were used to hunt rabbits, rats, and other vermin, and to drive them from their underground burrows. By the 15th century, the verb ferret was being used of the action of hunting with ferrets. By the late 16th century, the verb had taken on figurative uses as well. Today, we most frequently encounter the verb ferret in the sense of “to find and bring to light by searching.”


Lake桑

August 09, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:beholden(转自 韦氏词典)

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Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for August 8, 2020 is:

beholden • \bih-HOHL-dun\  • adjective

: being under obligation for a favor or gift : indebted

Examples:

“When the Second Continental Congress ratified the final text of this Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, it was launching into uncharted territory. They were creating a vision for a country that did not yet exist. As Ronald Reagan would later say, ‘This idea that government is beholden to the people, that it has no other source of power except the sovereign people, is still the newest and the most unique idea in all the long history of man’s relation to man.'” — Brad Wenstrup, The Cincinnati (Ohio) Enquirer, 4 July 2020

“Group sizes will remain beholden to the gatherings limits put in place by the governor’s state of emergency order for managing the state’s economy and government amid the COVID-19 pandemic.” — Michael Frett, The St. Albans (Vermont) Messenger, 23 June 2020

Did you know?

Have you ever found yourself under obligation to someone else for a gift or favor? It’s a common experience and, not surprisingly, many of the words describing this condition have been part of the English language for centuries. Beholden is recorded in the Middle-English Arthurian poem Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. Indebted, which entered English through Anglo-French, is older and still very much in use. Those who don’t mind sounding like English speakers of yore have another synonym of beholden to choose from: a now-archaic sense of bounden. That word is today more often used with the meaning “made obligatory” or “binding,” as in “our bounden duty.”


Lake桑

August 08, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:midriff(转自 韦氏词典)

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Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for August 7, 2020 is:

midriff • \MID-riff\  • noun

1 : the mid-region of the human torso : midsection

2 a : a section of a garment that covers the midriff

b : a garment that exposes the midriff

3 : a body partition of muscle and connective tissue; specifically : the partition separating the chest and abdominal cavities in mammals : diaphragm

Examples:

Even the store’s winter line of clothing includes a number of midriff-baring tops, albeit paired with oversized cardigans or flannel shirts.

“I love printed shift dresses that just float over the midriff or little leather skirts to bring out your edgier side.” — Aramide Esubi, The Chicago Tribune, 22 Mar. 2020

Did you know?

Midriff is now most commonly encountered in the mid-torso or clothing-related senses. These senses are relatively young, having appeared, respectively, in the early 19th and mid-20th centuries. For most of its history, however, midriff has been used to refer to the diaphragm (a large flat muscle separating the lungs from the stomach area). The diaphragm sense has been with us for more than 1,000 years, with the earliest known uses being found in Old English manuscripts such as Bald’s Leechbook, a medical text that is believed to date back to the 9th century. The riff in midriff comes from Old English hrif (“belly, womb”). Hrif is akin to Old High German href (“womb”) and probably also to Latin corpus (“body”).


Lake桑

August 07, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:grubstake(转自 韦氏词典)

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Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for August 6, 2020 is:

grubstake • \GRUB-stayk\  • verb

: to provide with material assistance (such as a loan) for launching an enterprise or for a person in difficult circumstances

Examples:

“Kimbro, on the other hand, traveled widely, still hoping to find the speculator who would grubstake him for the big attack on the hidden field. He would go anywhere, consult with anyone, and offer almost any kind of inducement: ‘Let me have the money, less than a year, ten-percent interest, and I’ll give you one-thirty-second of my participation.'” — James A. Michener, Texas, 1985

“When my entrepreneurial father had the bright idea to start a microfilm company, he asked my grandfather for financial help, only to be refused.… Eventually his brother, Frank, a doctor, grubstaked him for $500 to help start the company, a tidy sum in those days.” — Phil Power, Bridge Magazine (Michigan), 28 Mar. 2020

Did you know?

Grubstake is a linguistic nugget that was dug up during the famous California Gold Rush, which began in 1848. Sometime between the first stampede and the early 1860s, when the gold-seekers headed off to Montana, prospectors combined grub (“food”) and stake, meaning “an interest or share in an undertaking.” At first grubstake was a noun, referring to any kind of loan or provisions that could be finagled to make an undertaking possible (with the agreement that the “grubstaker” would get a cut of any profits). By the 1870s, grubstake was also showing up as a verb meaning “to give someone a grubstake,” and, since at least 1900, shortly after the Klondike Gold Rush, it has been applied to other situations in which a generous benefactor comes through with the funds.


Lake桑

August 06, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:demure(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


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

demure • \dih-MYOOR\  • adjective

1 : reserved, modest

2 : affectedly modest, reserved, or serious : coy

Examples:

“Her demure demeanor belies the inner Goth girl who once hung out with Mötley Crue and Ozzy Osbourne. She maintains art forms her first priority for being alive. The social distancing produced by the coronavirus is nothing new to her.” — Kathaleen Roberts, The Albuquerque (New Mexico) Journal, 21 June 2020

“While Amelia Bloomer’s name became a punch line, Susan B. Anthony would be remembered for a much different fashion statement: a demure red shawl, one example of which survives in the Smithsonian.” — ­ Kimberly Chrisman-Campbell, The Atlantic, 12 June 2019

Did you know?

In the nearly four centuries that demure has been in use, its meaning has only shifted slightly. While it began solely as a descriptive term for people of quiet modesty and sedate reserve—those who don’t draw attention to themselves, whether because of a shy nature or determined self-control—it came to be applied also to those whose modesty and reservation is more affectation than sincere expression. While demure sounds French and entered the language at a time when the native tongue of England was borrowing many French words from the Normans who gained control of the country after the Battle of Hastings in 1066, the etymological evidence requires that we exercise restraint: the word’s origin remains obscure.


Lake桑

August 05, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:aficionado(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


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

aficionado • \uh-fish-ee-uh-NAH-doh\  • noun

: a person who likes, knows about, and appreciates a usually fervently pursued interest or activity : devotee

Examples:

Mickey’s brother, an aficionado of jazz, was a regular at the downtown clubs and often bought new records on the day they were released.

“But assessing the investment value of a vintage watch or a vintage car—a popular pastime among aficionados—can be a tricky business. Supply, or lack of it, often dictates which models appreciate, and which lose value.” — Stephen Williams, The New York Times, 18 June 2020

Did you know?

The affection an aficionado has for their favorite subject isn’t merely emotional—it’s also etymological. Back in the early 1800s, English borrowed aficionado from the past participle of the Spanish verb aficionar, which means “to inspire affection.” That verb comes from the Spanish noun afición, meaning “affection.” Both Spanish words trace to the Latin affectiō (which is also an ancestor of the English word affection). Affectiō, in turn, is from afficere (“to influence”) and gave English speakers the noun and verb affect.


Lake桑

August 04, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:risible(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


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

risible • \RIZZ-uh-bul\  • adjective

1 a : capable of laughing

b : disposed to laugh

2 : arousing or provoking laughter; especially : laughable

3 : associated with, relating to, or used in laughter

Examples:

“When they arrived … they were treated to a sight that was as surreal as it was risible: Kamo Petrossian dressed in whites and sporting a captain’s hat complete with gold braid and embroidered badge, strutting about the sun deck, clutching a champagne flute.” — Peter Crawley, Mazzeri, 2013

“In the tradition of risible cable reality hits like Married at First Sight and 90 Day Fiancé, [Netflix’s] new ‘social experiment’ Love Is Blind follows couples who’ve been thrust on the fast track to marriage. The twist is that they don’t lay eyes on each other until they’re engaged; each ‘date’ consists solely of a chat between one man and one woman lounging in separate ‘pods.'” — Judy Berman, Time, 27 Feb. 2020

Did you know?

If someone makes a ridiculous remark about your risible muscles, they are not necessarily deriding your physique. Risible can also mean “associated with laughter,” so risible muscles can simply be the ones used for laughing. (You’ve also got a set of risorius muscles around your mouth that help you smile.) Next time you find something laughable, tip your hat to ridēre, the Latin verb meaning “to laugh” that gave us risible as well as ridiculous and deride.


Lake桑

August 03, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:ombudsman(转自 韦氏词典)

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

ombudsman • \AHM-boodz-mun\  • noun

1 : a government official (as in Sweden or New Zealand) appointed to receive and investigate complaints made by individuals against abuses or capricious acts of public officials

2 : one that investigates, reports on, and helps settle complaints

Examples:

“High-performing nursing homes usually have waiting lists, said Salli Pung, the state of Michigan’s long-term care ombudsman.” — Craig Mauger, The Detroit News, 26 June 2020

“The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has named Jonathan Midgett as its consumer ombudsman, a new position that seeks to give consumers a greater voice and understanding of the agency and its activities.” — Thomas Russell, Furniture Today, 16 June 2020

Did you know?

Ombudsman was borrowed from Swedish, where it means “representative,” and ultimately derives from the Old Norse words umboth (“commission”) and mathr (“man”). Sweden became the first country to appoint an independent official known as an ombudsman to investigate complaints against government officials and agencies. Since then, other countries (such as Finland, Denmark, and New Zealand), as well as some U.S. states, have appointed similar officials. The word also designates a person who reviews complaints against an organization (such as a school or hospital) or to someone who enforces standards of journalistic ethics at a newspaper.


Lake桑

August 02, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:hotdog(转自 韦氏词典)

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

hotdog • \HAHT-dawg\  • verb

: to perform in a conspicuous or often ostentatious manner; especially : to perform fancy stunts and maneuvers (as while surfing or skiing)

Examples:

The wide receiver hotdogged into the end zone after catching the touchdown pass.

“When you’re skating a four-and-a-half mile long trail, you don’t need to worry about crowds. Nobody’s coming along behind you, or hotdogging alongside.” — Joyce Maynard, The New York Times, 11 Feb. 2020

Did you know?

The verb hotdog first appeared in the latter half of the 20th century, and it was adopted from the use of the noun hot dog for someone who is very good at something. The noun was popularized around the turn of the 19th century along with the interjection hot dog to express approval or gratification. In time, the noun became mainly associated with people who showed off their skills in sports, from basketball to skiing, and the verb form came to be used for the spectacular acts of these show-offs. (As a side tidbit to chew on, the word for the frankfurter that might be eaten while watching athletes perform was also on the menu in the late 19th century.)


Lake桑

August 01, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:rife(转自 韦氏词典)

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Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for July 31, 2020 is:

rife • \RYFE\  • adjective

1 : prevalent especially to an increasing degree

2 : abundant, common

3 : copiously supplied : abounding

Examples:

“Like most colleges and universities, ad schools have found themselves going virtual … because of the novel coronavirus pandemic. However, students soon graduating from these programs are facing a job market rife with layoffs, hiring freezes and canceled internships….” — Doug Zanger, Adweek, 8 June 2020

“Red-tailed hawks and some other raptors have learned that our highways are rife with rodents, so they perch on light poles, nearby trees or signs and wait to spot a meal.” — Val Cunningham, The Star Tribune (Minneapolis, Minnesota), 9 June 2020

Did you know?

English is rife with words that have Germanic connections, many of which have been handed down to us from Old English. Rife is one of those words. Not a whole lot has changed with rife in its long history. We continue to use the word for negative things, especially those that are widespread or prevalent. Examples are “shoplifting was rife” or “the city was rife with greed and corruption.” Rumors and speculation are also frequently described as “rife.” But rife can also be appropriately used for good or neutral things. For example, you might speak of the summer garden being “rife” with scents.


Lake桑

July 31, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:catastrophe(转自 韦氏词典)

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Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for July 30, 2020 is:

catastrophe • \kuh-TASS-truh-fee\  • noun

1 : a momentous tragic event ranging from extreme misfortune to utter overthrow or ruin

2 : utter failure : fiasco

3 a : a violent and sudden change in a feature of the earth

b : a violent usually destructive natural event (such as a supernova)

4 : the final event of the dramatic action especially of a tragedy

Examples:

“We are a nation that’s used to catastrophes. We deal with avalanches, earthquakes, eruptions, and so on.” — Alma Möller, quoted in The New Yorker, 1 June 2020

“Be the challenge grave illness, divorce, a natural disaster or an economic meltdown, the rebound represents how we respond, how we stand strong in the face of catastrophe, how we refuse to give up.” — Designers Today, 27 May 2020

Did you know?

When English speakers first borrowed the Greek word katastrophē (from katastrephein, meaning “to overturn”) as catastrophe in the 1500s, they used it for the conclusion or final event of a dramatic work, especially of a tragedy. In time, catastrophe came to be used more generally of any unhappy conclusion, or disastrous or ruinous end. By the mid-18th century, it was being used to denote truly devastating events, such as earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. Finally, it came to be applied to things that are only figuratively catastrophic—burnt dinners, lost luggage, really bad movies, etc.


Lake桑

July 30, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:pejorative(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for July 29, 2020 is:

pejorative • \pih-JOR-uh-tiv\  • adjective

: having negative connotations; especially : tending to disparage or belittle : depreciatory

Examples:

The captain has come under fire for making pejorative remarks about teammates.

“There are only two ways to influence human behavior: you can manipulate it or you can inspire it. When I mention manipulation, this is not necessarily pejorative; it’s a very common and fairly benign tactic.” — Simon Sinek, Start with Why, 2009

Did you know?

“If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.” Parents have given that good advice for years, but unfortunately many people haven’t heeded it. The word pejorative makes it clear that both English and Latin speakers have long known that disparaging words can make a bad situation worse. Pejorative derives from the Late Latin adjective pējōrātus, which in turn comes from the Latin verb pējōrāre, meaning “to make or become worse.” Although pejorative words have probably always been part of English, the adjective pejorative has only been found in English texts since the late 1880s. Before then, English speakers could rely on older synonyms of pejorative such as derogatory and uncomplimentary to describe disparaging words.


Lake桑

July 29, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:mesmerize(转自 韦氏词典)

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Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for July 28, 2020 is:

mesmerize • \MEZ-muh-ryze\  • verb

1 : to subject to mesmerism; also : hypnotize

2 : spellbind

Examples:

The crowd was mesmerized by the flawlessly synchronous movements of the acrobats.

“Control is a coveted possession in Credulity, Ogden’s illuminating recent study of American mesmerism. The mesmerists and skeptics she studies all seem to want it; at any rate, they want to consider themselves rational and self-possessed enough not to fall under anyone else’s. During this brief, strange moment between 1836 and the late 1850s, mesmerizing another person—or seeing someone get mesmerized, or denouncing mesmerists as charlatans—became a way of stockpiling control for one’s own use.” — Max Nelson, The New York Review of Books, 24 July 2019

Did you know?

Experts can’t agree on whether Franz Anton Mesmer (1734-1815) was a quack or a genius, but all concede that the late 18th-century physician’s name is the source of the word mesmerize. In his day, Mesmer was the toast of Paris, where he enjoyed the support of notables including Queen Marie Antoinette. He treated patients with a force he termed animal magnetism. Many believe that what he actually used was what we now call hypnotism. Mesmer’s name was first applied to a technique for inducing hypnosis in 1784.


Lake桑

July 28, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:anomaly(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for July 27, 2020 is:

anomaly • \uh-NAH-muh-lee\  • noun

1 : something different, abnormal, peculiar, or not easily classified : something anomalous

2 : deviation from the common rule : irregularity

3 : the angular distance of a planet from its perihelion as seen from the sun

Examples:

“Thermal Scanning uses intelligent thermal technology and checks the temperature of everyone entering the premises and triggers necessary alarms in case of an anomaly in the temperature.” — Business World, 12 June 2020

“[Rich] Wingo is also part of a statistical anomaly of sorts: He scored one point in his NFL career. He is one of four Packers to have scored a single point….” — Jim Owczarski, The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 15 June 2020

Did you know?

You might be familiar with the Greek word homos, which means “same.” It is from this word that we get words like homonym, homogeneous, and homophone, all of which have to do with sameness or similarity. What does this have to do with anomaly? Although it’s not obvious, homos is a part of the etymology of anomaly, too. Anomaly is a descendant of the Greek word anōmalos, which means “uneven” or “irregular.” Anōmalos comes from the prefix a- (meaning “not”) and the word homalos (meaning “even”)—and homalos comes from homos.


Lake桑

July 27, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:epistolary(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for July 26, 2020 is:

epistolary • \ih-PIST-uh-lair-ee\  • adjective

1 : of, relating to, or suitable to a letter

2 : contained in or carried on by letters

3 : written in the form of a series of letters

Examples:

“Jonathan Franzen, with whom he had struck up an epistolary friendship, offered to get together that April when he was in Boston.” — D. T. Max, Every Love Story is a Ghost Story: A Life of David Foster Wallace, 2012

“It is an epistolary novel, but spare, as opposed to an 18th-century novel like Clarissa, in which female characters write twice a day. Very few letters are exchanged between the friends; sometimes years pass in between.” — Don Noble, The Tuscaloosa (Alabama) News, 2 May 2020

Did you know?

Epistolary was formed from the noun epistle, which refers to a composition written in the form of a letter to a particular person or group. In its original sense, epistle refers to one of the 21 letters (such as those from the apostle Paul) found in the New Testament. Epistle came to English in the 13th century, via Anglo-French and Latin, from the Greek noun epistolē, meaning “message” or “letter.” Epistolē, in turn, came from the verb epistellein, meaning “to send to” or “to send from.” Epistolary appeared in English four centuries after epistle and can be used to describe something related to or contained in a letter (as in “epistolary greetings”) or composed of letters (as in “an epistolary novel”).


Lake桑

July 26, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:noblesse oblige(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for July 25, 2020 is:

noblesse oblige • \noh-BLESS-uh-BLEEZH\  • noun

: the obligation of honorable, generous, and responsible behavior associated with high rank or birth

Examples:

“Like many independent schools, Shipley cultivates a sense of noblesse oblige among its students—the notion that part of being educated in a privileged environment requires scholars to give back.” — Alfred Lubrano, The Philadelphia Inquirer, 20 May 2020

“And, unlike the goal of simply becoming fabulously wealthy—which one could also accomplish by winning the lottery or marrying a nonroyal oil magnate—princesshood came with a sense of noblesse oblige. You would be doing it to inspire people. You would be your own act of charity.” — Monica Hesse, The Washington Post, 10 Jan. 2020

Did you know?

In French, noblesse oblige means literally “nobility obligates.” French speakers transformed the phrase into a noun, which English speakers picked up in the 19th century. Then, as now, noblesse oblige referred to the unwritten obligation of people from a noble ancestry to act honorably and generously to others. Later, by extension, it also came to refer to the obligation of anyone who is in a better position than others—due, for example, to high office or celebrity—to act respectably and responsibly.


Lake桑

July 25, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:bowdlerize(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for July 24, 2020 is:

bowdlerize • \BOHD-ler-ize\  • verb

1 literature : to expurgate (something, such as a book) by omitting or modifying parts considered vulgar

2 : to modify by abridging, simplifying, or distorting in style or content

Examples:

“Certainly, there’s no risk that all art will be bowdlerized into nice stories about people saving puppies, but it’s not wrong to note a fading appetite for antiheroes and bad behavior.” — Jonah E. Bromwich, The New York Times, 12 Mar. 2020

“Under his rule, career scientists are barred from speaking at conferences, websites are bowdlerized, and the respected National Climate Assessment is threatened by political appointees who want to soften its most dire conclusions.” — Renée Loth, The Boston Globe, 25 Nov. 2019

Did you know?

Few editors have achieved the notoriety of Thomas Bowdler. He was trained as a physician, but when illness prevented him from practicing medicine, he turned to warning Europeans about unsanitary conditions at French watering places. Bowdler then carried his quest for purification to literature, and in 1818 he published his Family Shakspeare [sic], a work in which he promised that “those words and expressions are omitted which cannot with propriety be read aloud in a family.” The sanitized volume was popular with the public of the day, but literary critics denounced his modifications of the words of the Bard. Bowdler applied his literary eraser broadly, and within 11 years of his death in 1825 the word bowdlerize was being used to refer to expurgating books or other texts.


Lake桑

July 24, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:gyre(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for July 23, 2020 is:

gyre • \JYRE\  • noun

: a circular or spiral motion or form; especially : a giant circular oceanic surface current

Examples:

Sophia will be focusing her graduate studies on the effects of ocean gyres on North America’s climate.

“The exception has been the Weddell Sea … which retains much of its ice from year to year because of cold winds from the south and a circular current, or gyre, that keeps the ice from drifting into warmer waters that would cause it to melt more.” — Henry Fountain, The New York Times, 17 June 2020

Did you know?

William Butler Yeats opens his 1920 poem, “The Second Coming,” with the following lines: “Turning and turning in the widening gyre / The falcon cannot hear the falconer; / Things fall apart; the center cannot hold; / Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world….” Often found in poetic or literary contexts as an alternative to the more familiar circle or spiral, gyre comes via the Latin gyrus from the Greek gyros, meaning “ring” or “circle.” Gyre is also frequently encountered as an oceanographic term that refers to vast circular systems of ocean currents, such as the North Atlantic Gyre, a system of currents circling clockwise between Europe, Africa, and the Americas. Gyre is also sometimes used of more localized vortices, such as those produced by whirlpools or tornadoes.


Lake桑

July 23, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:requisite(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for July 22, 2020 is:

requisite • \REK-wuh-zut\  • adjective

: needed for a particular purpose : essential, necessary

Examples:

“Once the application process was formalized, the Institute received nearly two hundred applications from women all across the country; other women interested in applying had been turned away because they didn’t have the requisite qualifications.” — Maggie Doherty, The Equivalents, 2020

“More chile sauce, if you want a vinegary zing, is on the tables, along with the requisite paper towels. As for that stellar taco, it’s made with the same flavorful carnitas with … a drizzle of avocado crema that sets off taste-tingling fireworks.” — The Texas Monthly, 26 Feb. 2020

Did you know?

Acquiring an understanding of where requisite comes from won’t require a formal inquiry. Without question, the quest begins with Latin quaerere, which means “to ask” or “to seek.” That word is ancestor to a number of English words, including acquire, require, inquiry, question, quest, and, of course, requisite. From quaerere came requirere, meaning “to ask again.” Repeated requests can express a need, and the past participle of Latin requirere, which is requisitus, came to mean “needed” or “necessary.” English acquired requisite when it was adopted into Middle English back in the 1400s.


Lake桑

July 22, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:inculcate(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for July 21, 2020 is:

inculcate • \in-KUL-kayt\  • verb

: to teach and impress by frequent repetitions or admonitions

Examples:

“[Edgar Allan Poe] was in general not a didactic writer; in fact, he criticized stories and poems that sought to inculcate virtue and convey the truth.” — Paul Lewis, The Baltimore Sun, 12 May 2020

“Dogs like routine…. They know when it is time for dinner, time for a walk. And if you have not inculcated these types of routines for them, some dogs will have anxiety when they are alone.” — Dr. Terri Bright, quoted in The Boston Globe, 17 Apr. 2020

Did you know?

Inculcate derives from the past participle of the Latin verb inculcare, meaning “to tread on.” In Latin, inculcare possesses both literal and figurative meanings, referring to either the act of walking over something or to that of impressing something upon the mind, often by way of steady repetition. It is the figurative sense that survives with inculcate, which was first used in English in the 16th century. Inculcare was formed in Latin by combining the prefix in– with calcare, meaning “to trample,” and ultimately derives from the noun calx, “heel.”


Lake桑

July 21, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:derelict(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for July 20, 2020 is:

derelict • \DAIR-uh-likt\  • adjective

1 : abandoned especially by the owner or occupant; also : run-down

2 : lacking a sense of duty : negligent

Examples:

“On Tuesday, crews … were busy using excavators to tear down derelict buildings on the two sites to make way for future construction.” — Bea Lewis, The New Hampshire Union Leader, 27 May 2020

“But the building suffered additional roof damage in late fall, triggering an emergency demolition that rocked the preservation community and prompted anger against derelict landlords. It also prompted renewed efforts by the city to crack down on absentee and neglectful landlords.” — Jonathan D. Epstein, The Buffalo (New York) News, 7 May 2020

Did you know?

The Latin verb relinquere, meaning “to leave behind,” left behind a few English derivatives, including derelict. Something derelict has been left behind, or at least appears that way. In another sense, someone who is derelict leaves behind or neglects their duties or obligations. Another descendant of relinquere is relinquish, meaning “to leave behind,” “to give up,” or “to release.” Relic is another example of a word that ultimately comes from relinquere. Relics, in the original sense of the term, referred to things treasured for their association with a saint or martyr—that is, objects saints and martyrs had left behind. Relinquere also gives English its name for the containers or shrines which hold relics, reliquary.


Lake桑

July 20, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:volte-face(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for July 19, 2020 is:

volte-face • \vawlt-FAHSS\  • noun

: a reversal in policy : about-face

Examples:

“… I should explain that, some years ago, I was dealt a very severe blow when my friend … announced that she wanted no further contact with me. She and I had been extremely close for more than a year, and there had been no warning of this volte-face. I was bewildered.” — Zoë Heller, What Was She Thinking? Notes on a Scandal, 2003

“After declaring optimistically, ‘I think I have a lot to say that might be interesting to people,’ she did an abrupt volte-face, switching to a low, confessional timbre: ‘Who knows? Who knows, right, what I’m doing? I don’t know. Maybe no one will be interested.'” — Caity Weaver, The New York Times, 28 May 2020

Did you know?

Volte-face came to English by way of French from Italian voltafaccia, a combination of voltare, meaning “to turn,” and faccia, “face.” It has existed as an English noun since at least 1819. The corresponding English phrase “about face” saw use in a number of forms in the decades before that, including military commands such as “right about face” (that is, to turn 180 degrees to the right so as to face in the opposite direction); nevertheless, the standalone noun about-face (as in “After declining, he did an abrupt about-face and accepted the offer”) is about as old as volte-face. Although foot soldiers have been stepping smartly to the command “About face! Forward march!” for centuries, about-face didn’t appear in print as a figurative noun meaning “a reversal of attitude, behavior, or point of view” until the mid-1800s.


Lake桑

July 19, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:jink(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for July 18, 2020 is:

jink • \JINK\  • verb

: to move quickly or unexpectedly with sudden turns and shifts (as in dodging)

Examples:

“Two fighters immediately launched missiles, and the American aircraft jinked up, then down to lose them.” — Tom Clancy, Red Storm Rising, 1986

“Indeed there have been enough moments where he has jinked away from opponents or worked half a yard with his lightning-quick feet to produce a plethora of YouTube compilations.” — Alex Richards, The Mirror (UK), 2 June 2020

Did you know?

Besides the fact that jink first appears in Scottish English, the exact origins of this shifty little word are unknown. What can be said with certainty is that the word has always expressed a quick or unexpected motion. For instance, in two poems from 1785, Robert Burns uses jink as a verb to indicate both the quick motion of a fiddler’s elbow and the sudden disappearance of a cheat around a corner. In the 20th century, the verb caught on with air force pilots and rugby players, who began using it to describe their elusive maneuvers to dodge opponents and enemies. Jink can also be used as a noun meaning “a quick evasive turn” or, in its plural form, “pranks.” The latter use was likely influenced by the term high jinks, which originally referred in the late 17th century to a Scottish drinking game and later came to refer to horseplay.


Lake桑

July 18, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:mien(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for July 17, 2020 is:

mien • \MEEN\  • noun

1 : air or bearing especially as expressive of attitude or personality : demeanor

2 : appearance, aspect

Examples:

The minister projected a stern and serious mien from the pulpit, but we found him to be friendly and welcoming when we spoke with him in the social hall after the service.

“The band’s synthetic sounds, automated rhythms and severe haircuts were a pointed contrast with the prevailing … rock music of the time, just as the group’s rigorously Teutonic mien was a reaction to the hegemony of American culture in postwar Germany. Kraftwerk wanted to create its own culture.” — Michael Azerrad, The New York Times, 8 May 2020

Did you know?

Like its synonyms bearing and demeanor, mien means the outward manifestation of personality or attitude. Bearing is the most general, but it often implies characteristic posture, as in “a woman of regal bearing.” Demeanor suggests attitude expressed through outward behavior in the presence of others—for example, “the manager’s professional demeanor.” Mien is a somewhat literary term referring to both bearing and demeanor. “A mien of supreme self-satisfaction” is a typical use. Mien and demeanor are also linked through etymology. Mien arose through the shortening and alteration of the verb demean, which comes from the Anglo-French demener (“to conduct”), a combination of the de- prefix with mener (“to lead”) that is also the root of demeanor. In this case, demean means “to conduct or behave (oneself) usually in a proper manner,” not “to degrade.” That other demean is a distinct word with a different etymology.


Lake桑

July 17, 2020 at 01:00PM

每日一词:callous(转自 韦氏词典)

原文链接


Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for July 16, 2020 is:

callous • \KAL-us\  • adjective

1 a : being hardened and thickened

b : having calluses

2 a : feeling no emotion

b : feeling or showing no sympathy for others : hard-hearted

Examples:

“[Noël Coward] deliberately made the characters callous and cynical. ‘You can’t sympathise with any of them,’ he said. ‘If there was heart [in the play] it would have been a sad story.'” — Lloyd Evans, The Spectator, 28 Mar. 2020

“Today we have been appalled by the sight of tens of thousands of irresponsible vacationers flocking to the coast, as if this was just another spring break week, with callous disregard for residents’ health and safety.” —  Bruce Jones, quoted on OregonLive.com, 22 Mar. 2020

Did you know?

A callus is a hard, thickened area of skin that develops usually from friction or irritation over time. Such a hardened area often leaves one less sensitive to the touch, so it’s no surprise that the adjective callous, in addition to describing skin that is hard and thick, can also be used as a synonym for harsh or insensitive. Both callus and callous derive via Middle English from Latin. The figurative sense of callous entered English almost 300 years after the literal sense, and Robert Louis Stevenson used it aptly when he wrote, in Treasure Island, “But, indeed, from what I saw, all these buccaneers were as callous as the sea they sailed on.”


Lake桑

July 16, 2020 at 01:00PM