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Mar 3, 2010
This week's theme
Words borrowed from various languages

This week's words
goulash
cabal
potlatch
laager
baksheesh

Potlatch
potlatch
(Artist: James Gilchrist Swan)

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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

potlatch

PRONUNCIATION:
(POT-lach)

MEANING:
noun:
1. A party or get-together.
2. A ceremonial festival among North American Indians of the Pacific Northwest involving feasts, lavish gift giving, dances, etc.

ETYMOLOGY:
From Chinook Jargon, from Nootka patshatl (to give, gift).

USAGE:
"'[The youth ambassadors] were coming to the biggest potlatch in the world, sharing and developing a sense of pride in who they are,' Diane Strand says."
Shelley Fralic; World's Biggest Potlatch Changing Attitudes; Vancouver Sun (Canada); Feb 24, 2010.

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

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
Twin Mystery. To many people artists seem / undisciplined and lawless. / Such laziness, with such great gifts, / seems little short of crime. / One mystery is how they make / the things they make so flawless; / another, what they're doing with / their energy and time. -Piet Hein, poet and scientist (1905-1996)

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