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Apr 7, 2015
This week’s theme
Kangaroo words

This week’s words
quiescent
catacomb
perambulate
expurgate
frangible

The catacombs of Paris
The catacombs of Paris
Photo: Ignis/Wikimedia

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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

catacomb

PRONUNCIATION:
(KAT-uh-kom, -koom)

MEANING:
noun:
1. An underground cemetery with passageways and recesses for graves.
2. A thing or a place that is complex or labyrinthine.

ETYMOLOGY:
From Latin catacumbas, of obscure origin. Earliest documented use: 971.

USAGE:
“The catacombs beneath Paris, which famously house the remains of six million dead, are probably one of the last places you’d want to feel trapped.”
Robert Abele; Dredging Up Cliches Below Ground in Paris; Los Angeles Times; Aug 30, 2014.

“Some of [users’ anger was from] fear that their gaming device would wither away in the Facebook catacombs, forgotten by a young billionaire mogul with buyer’s remorse.”
Peter Rubin; Oculus Rift; Wired (New York); Jun 2014.

See more usage examples of catacomb in Vocabulary.com’s dictionary.

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
It is chiefly through books that we enjoy intercourse with superior minds. -William Ellery Channing, clergyman and writer (7 Apr 1780-1842)

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