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Sep 2, 2014
This week's theme
Words that have many unrelated meanings

This week's words
consonance
levee

levee
The Countess's Morning Levee
Art: William Hogarth (1697-1764)

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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

levee

PRONUNCIATION:
(LEV-ee)

MEANING:
noun:
1. An embankment made to prevent flooding.
2. An embankment around a field that is to be irrigated.
3. A landing place; a quay.
4. A formal reception.

ETYMOLOGY:
For 1-3: From French levée, past participle of lever (to raise). Earliest documented use: 1718.
For 4: From French levé, variant of lever (rising from bed), from lever (to rise). Originally, a levee was a meeting held on a royal's rising from bed. Earliest documented use: 1700.

USAGE:
"The tears had broken over the levee of her black lashes now."
Cynthia Robinson; The Barbary Dogs; Minotaur Books; 2011.

"The president and I would like you to be our guest at the levee tonight."
Phyllis Phillips; Memories: The Guardian of the Heart; AuthorHouse; 2013.

See more usage examples of levee in Vocabulary.com's dictionary.

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
I realize that patriotism is not enough. I must have no hatred or bitterness towards anyone. -Edith Cavell, nurse and humanitarian (1865-1915)

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