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May 15, 2013
This week's theme
Verbs

This week's words
ensconce
equivocate
petrify
impute
exscind

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petrify

PRONUNCIATION:
(PE-tri-fy)

MEANING:
verb tr.:
1. To turn into stone.
2. To harden or deaden.
3. To stun or paralyze with fear.

verb intr.:
To become stony or callous.

ETYMOLOGY:
From Latin petra (rock), from Greek petra (cliff, rock). Ultimately from the Indo-European root per- (to lead, pass over), which also gave us support, comport, petroleum, sport, passport, petrichor (the pleasant smell that accompanies the first rain), colporteur (a peddler of religious books), Swedish fartlek (a training technique), Norwegian fjord (bay), and Sanskrit parvat (mountain). Earliest documented use: 1425.

USAGE:
"The thought of death does not petrify me."
Keith Roach; Dr. Roach; Idaho State Journal (Pocatello); Jan 9, 2013.

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

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
Seek not to follow in the footsteps of men of old; seek what they sought. -Matsuo Basho, poet (1644-1694)

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