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A.Word.A.Day--os

Pronunciation Sound Clip RealAudio

This week's theme: words that have many unrelated meanings.

os (aws) noun [plural ora]

1. A mouth or an orifice.
[From Latin os (mouth).]

os (aws) noun [plural ossa]

2. A bone.
[From Latin os (bone).]

os (oas) noun [plural osar]

3. An esker: a long, serpentine ridge of gravel formed by a stream flowing in or under a glacial ice sheet.
[From Swedish ås (ridge).]

It also appears as an abbreviation in many fields, including
Chemistry: Os - symbol for the element osmium
Computing: OS - Operating System
Pharmacy: OS - left eye (from Latin oculus sinister)
Linguistics: OS - Old Saxon

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

-Anu Garg (garg wordsmith.org)

"Naturally, the students couldn't resist testing the teachers' knowledge. 'You'd better slow down,' they would tell some unsuspecting pedagogue, 'or you might fall and break your os.'"
D.L. Stanley; I Hope This Doesn't Effectuate Your Dudgeon; Atlanta Inquirer (Georgia); Nov 16, 1996.

X-Bonus

No sensible decision can be made any longer without taking into account not only the world as it is, but the world as it will be. -Isaac Asimov, scientist and writer (1920-1992)

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