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GOLDEN CALF

PRONUNCIATION: (GOL-den KAHF)

MEANING: noun: Someone or something unworthy that is excessively esteemed.

ETYMOLOGY: In the biblical story Moses came down from Mount Sinai carrying stone tablets with the Ten Commandments only to find Israelites worshiping a calf made of gold. Earliest documented use: 1575.
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GOODEN CALF - what the NY Mets pitching star got his power from

GOLDEN CALIF - 1. tale of the 615th Arabian NIght ((Westerners may recognize the story of King Midas) 2. the Gate where the Bridge is

GOLDEN RALF - King Midas just barfed

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SILVER SPOON

PRONUNCIATION: (SIL-vuhr spoon)

MEANING: noun: Inherited wealth.

ETYMOLOGY: The phrase is often used in the construction “to be born with a silver spoon in one’s mouth” meaning one’s born in privilege and wealth. The association of silver with riches is obvious, so why not a gold spoon? Nobody knows, though it may have something to do with silver’s biocidal properties. Earliest documented use: 1719.
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SILVER SPOOL - where to get the thread to weave among the gold

SALVER SPOON - what haute societé takes sugar and cream from

SOLVER SPOON - cruciverbalist's trophy

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TINHORN

PRONUNCIATION: (TIN-horn)

MEANING: noun: Someone who pretends to have money, skill, influence, etc.
adjective: Inferior or insignificant, while pretending to be otherwise.

ETYMOLOGY: The word has its origin in gambling, from the use of a cone-shaped container used to shake the dice. A tinhorn gambler was someone who pretended to be a big player, but actually played for small stakes. Earliest documented use: 1885.
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EINHORN - German word for "unicorn"

TINSHORN - deprived of all can-making material

TENHORN - a LARGE orchestral brass section

VINHORN - a cornucopia full of French wine

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BRASS TACKS

PRONUNCIATION: (bras taks)

MEANING: noun: Practical details; essentials; realities.

ETYMOLOGY: The term is typically used in the phrase “to get down to brass tacks”. There are many conjectures about the origins of the term, but it’s not confirmed why we say brass tacks, instead of, say iron tacks, or for that matter iron nails. Earliest documented use: 1863.
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BRA STACKS - the stock room in Victoria's Secret

BASS TACKS - how the fish swims upstream

BRASS TANKS - used in stills in place of copper to make a higher-class moonshine

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IRONCLAD

PRONUNCIATION: (EYE-uhrn-klad)

MEANING: adjective:
1. Covered with iron.
2. Inflexible, unbreakable, or indisputable.

ETYMOLOGY: From iron, from Old English iren + clad (clothed), from Old English clathod. Earliest documented use: 1752.
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IRON CLAY - not very good soil, but great ore

IRONIC LAD - Marvel's latest Superhero; always has something wry to say

IRON CHAD - how to make a ballot look unused

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ONYMOUS

PRONUNCIATION:(AHN-uh-muhs)

MEANING: adjective: Bearing the author’s name; named.

ETYMOLOGY: Back-formation from Latin anonymus, from Greek anonymus, from an- (not) + onyma (name). Earliest documented use: 1775. Anonymous is from 1601.
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ONYXOUS - like a black semi-precious jewel

ONYMPUS - one letter away from the home of the Greek Gods

NYMOUS - uninvited denizen of many Manhattan apartments

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SWASHBUCKLE

PRONUNCIATION: (SWASH-buhkl)

MEANING: verb intr.: To swagger, bluster, behave recklessly, etc.

ETYMOLOGY: Back-formation from swashbuckler (one who makes a noise by striking a sword on a shield), from swash (of imitative origin) + buckler (a small round shield), from boucle (a boss on a shield), from Latin buccula, diminutive of bucca (cheek). Earliest documented use: 1897. Swashbuckler is from 1560.
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SWISHBUCKLE - a special buckle designed to make intimidating sounds when the belt is whirled around the head, to be used as a weapon

SW ASHBUCKLE - the southwest quadrant of Ashbuckle, West Virginia, where wooden belt accessories are manufactured

SWASH BOUCKLÉ - woven wrist-watch bands

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ZIG

PRONUNCIATION: (zig)

MEANING: noun: A sharp turn or angle in a zigzag course.
verb intr.: To make a sharp turn.

ETYMOLOGY: Back-formation from zigzag, from French zigzag, from ziczac, from German Zickzack (zigzag), perhaps a reduplication of Zacke (peak, tooth, or nail). Earliest documented use: 1969. Zigzag is from 1712.
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ZING - twit-speak for "snoozing"

ZYG - a fertilized egg

ZIGH - taking a long, deep breath and then letting it out, while asleep

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(It went from Baltimore to Washington, DC, in 1844, though it sounds like it started in Boston)
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RORT

PRONUNCIATION: (rort)

MEANING: noun:
1. A fraudulent scheme or practice.
2. A wild party.

ETYMOLOGY: Back-formation from rorty (boisterous, lively, jolly), of uncertain origin. Earliest documented use: 1926. Rorty is from 1868.
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ROIT - a correct Cockney, yes?

AORT - a very short main artery leaving the Left Ventricle

RORO - what you do gently to your boat when you go down the stream

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COUTH

PRONUNCIATION: (kooth)

MEANING: adjective: Cultured; refined; sophisticated.
noun: Refinement; sophistication.

ETYMOLOGY: Back-formation from uncouth, from Old English uncuth (unknown), from un- (not) + cuth (known), past participle of cunnan (to know, to be able). Ultimately from the Indo-European root gno- (to know), which also gave us know, recognize, acquaint, ignore, diagnosis, notice, normal, anagnorisis, prosopagnosia, agnosia , cognize, gnomon, kenning, and unco. Earliest documented use: 1896. Uncouth is from 1732.
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CORUTH - what sings Hallelujah! in Handel's Methiah

HOUTH - where the Lispers live

COUTY - a poorly-defined, intermediate-sized political region, somewhere between a city and a county

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