Wordsmith.org: the magic of words


About | Media | Search | Contact  


Today's Word

Yesterday's Word



AWADmail Issue 725

A Weekly Compendium of Feedback on the Words in A.Word.A.Day and Tidbits about Words and Language

Sponsor’s Message:
“Old’s Cool” sums up our philosophy of life in a neat little turn of phrase - old school with a shot of wry, served neat. In that spirit, we’re offering this week’s Email of the Week winner, Elizabeth Kingson (see below), as well as all fathers, grandfathers and family men everywhere 20% off -- through midnight Monday only - just be sure to use coupon code “dad”. SHOP NOW.

From: Anu Garg (words at wordsmith.org)
Subject: Interesting stories from the Net

The Ultimate Latin Dictionary: After 122 Years, Still At Work On The Letter ‘N’
National Public Radio

Rejecting the Cult of Bardolatry Does Not Make You a Philistine
The Guardian

From: Andrew Pressburger (andpress sympatico.ca)
Subject: Ignominious

“Nomen est omen” has uncertain derivation but a definite meaning, i.e. one’s name [suggests] a person’s destiny or vocation.

“I think when you name a baby Jeeves, you’ve pretty much mapped out his future [as a butler].” -Jerry Seinfeld.

Andrew Pressburger, Toronto, Canada

Email of the Week - Dedicated to OLD’S COOL Dads everywhere. Get the T-shirt here!

From: Elizabeth Kingson (ekingson gmail.com)
Subject: Fractious

Many years ago, we had a feisty black kitten that my daughter named Fractious. Thinking back, the kid couldn’t have been more than five years old at the time. Her large vocabulary started young!

Elizabeth Kingson, Portland, Oregon

From: David Bernazani (hodave40 hotmail.com)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--fractious

As a veterinary technician, I use the word fractious all the time. We use it to describe a patient (usually a cat) who is combative, as in, ready to scratch and bite. When we want to warn the vet before opening the carrier, we say, “Careful, that cat’s pretty fractious.” They know exactly what we mean.

David Bernazani, RVT, Lafayette, California

From: Alex Freeman (kcorain yahoo.co.uk)
Subject: Fractious

This is a favourite word of mine. As a fan of the video game fantasy series Fable, this word first came to my attention in Fable 2.

One of many amusing propaganda-type posters in the victorianesque world shows a harassed-looking young woman holding a screaming infant with the headline, “Madam! Quieten that fractious child!”

It amused me no end and to this day it is what runs through my head whenever I am in the vicinity of a child who cannot be quiet!

Alex Freeman, Liverpool, UK

From: Flavia Vigio (flavia.vigio me.com)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--fractious

I went back to Monday’s factious example to see if you were actually closing the loop on the words carousel. You were, and that caused a small bolt of literary happiness. Thank you for that.

Flavia Vigio, Sao Paulo, Brazil

From: Dharam Khalsa (dharamkk2 gmail.com)
Subject: Anagrams of this week’s words

The anagram to the right is comprised of all the letters in the five words below, and this heading:
1. factious
2. repudiate
3. blandishment
4. ignominious
5. fractious
1. seditious
2. disown or invalidate a thing (betcha it’s “refudiate” to the dumb
S. Palin)
3. something which flatters
4. earning or causing shame
5. hot-, off- or ill-tempered
The text in the right box is an anagram of the text in the left.
Dharam Khalsa, Espanola, New Mexico

From: Anu Garg (words at wordsmith.org)
Subject: Limericks

Trump tends to yakkity-yak us,
With words divisive and factious.
Foreign policy? A joke.
I can’t believe all he spoke.
I hope our friends don’t attack us.
-Joan Perrin, Port Jefferson Station, New York (perrinjoan aol.com)

“Monsieur,” said the chef, “I repudiate
Ze claim he got sick from ze food he ate.”
“Got sick? No, he died,”
Said the man from the Guide,
“And your Michelin stars I’ll recalculate.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

He was quick with the flattering blandishment.
He was different, a gent, maybe heaven-sent.
He was handsome and fit
and she thought, “This is it”
but said one word, commitment, and there he went.
-Zelda Dvoretzky, Haifa, Israel (zeldahaifa gmail.com)

The black sheep of the family, Theonious,
Disgraceful, as he was ignominious.
The sound of his name
Evoked instant shame,
Though a side of him was punctilious.
-Judith Marks-White, Westport, Connecticut (joodth snet.net)

“It’s tough to be leading the Axis,”
Sighed Adolf, “with allies so fractious.
Benito and Tojo
Just don’t have my mojo
But hey, I don’t mean to sound captious.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

From: Phil Graham (pgraham1946 cox.net)
Subject: A good pun is its own reword

Like the flu, Trump has been infactious to the Republican party.

When Mr. Kobayashi’s results were repudiate the most hot dogs.

The hospital chef said, “Here is the blandishment for the stomach ulcer patient.”

As for Paderewski’s repertoire of concerti, did Ig know many? Yus!

You may fractious not in Oklahoma. It causes earthquakes.

Phil Graham, Tulsa, Oklahoma

From: Quinn Provencher (provenchqui62 tcapsstudent.net)
Subject: A.Word.A.Day

Thank you for sending me these words! They help me understand new things and make me feel smarter. I am glad that my teacher showed me this website. I am always eager to learn new things and A.Word.A.Day helps me achieve my goals. Again, thank you so much.

Quinn Provencher, Traverse City, Michigan

Language is as real, as tangible, in our lives as streets, pipelines, telephone switchboards, microwaves, radioactivity, cloning laboratories, nuclear power stations. -Adrienne Rich, writer (1929-2012)

We need your help

Help us continue to spread the magic of words to readers everywhere


Subscriber Services
Awards | Stats | Links | Privacy Policy
Contribute | Advertise

© 1994-2024 Wordsmith