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Sep 27, 2006
This week's theme
Miscellaneous words

This week's words
prelapsarian
senectitude
diacritical
theriac
prevenient

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with Anu Garg

diacritical

(dy-uh-KRIT-i-kuhl) Pronunciation Sound Clip RealAudio

adjective:
1. Distinctive; capable of distinguishing.
2. Serving as a diacritic (a mark, such as ^ or ~ or other accent marks, added to a letter to distinguish it from a similar letter, for example, to distinguish resume from résumé).

From Greek diakritikos (distinctive), from diakrinein (to distinguish), from dia- (apart) + krinein (to separate). Ultimately from the Indo-European root krei- (to sift or to discriminate) that also gave us crime, crisis, certain, excrement, secret, critic, garble, and hypocrisy.

"In a pertinent, diacritical chapter of this work, Stallabrass surveys the paucity of art criticism in turn-of-the-century Britain."
Will Self; I Danced to a Decadent Drum; New Statesman (London, UK); Jan 31, 2000.

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

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Kindness is more important than wisdom, and the recognition of this is the beginning of wisdom. -Theodore Rubin, psychiatrist and writer (b. 1923)

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