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May 3, 2010
This week's theme
Verbally speaking

This week's words
asseverate
scarper
imbricate
batten
vellicate

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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

If verbs ever needed a spokesperson, they'd find the perfect candidate in the naturalist and author Terry Tempest Williams, who once said:

This is my living faith, an active faith, a faith of verbs: to question, explore, experiment, experience, walk, run, dance, play, eat, love, learn, dare, taste, touch, smell, listen, argue, speak, write, read, draw, provoke, emote, scream, sin, repent, cry, kneel, pray, bow, rise, stand, look, laugh, cajole, create, confront, confound, walk back, walk forward, circle, hide, and seek. To seek: to embrace the questions, be wary of answers.

Williams said it well. Verbs make words come alive. Verbs are the words, literally, from Latin verbum (word). This week we'll look at five specimens from this tribe of words.

asseverate

PRONUNCIATION:
(uh-SEV-uh-rayt)

MEANING:
verb tr.: To affirm solemnly.

ETYMOLOGY:
From Latin asseverare (to declare in earnest), from severus (serious). Ultimately from the Indo-European root segh- (to hold), which is also the source of words such as hectic, scheme, scholar, and cathect.

USAGE:
"I asseverate from experience that some of my correspondence opponents do make use of a program."
Peter Gibbs; Pastimes: Chess; Birmingham Post (UK); Oct 9, 2004.

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

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
I speak the truth not so much as I would, but as much as I dare, and I dare a little more as I grow older. -Michel de Montaigne, essayist (1533-1592)

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