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CHIRK

PRONUNCIATION: (chuhrk)

MEANING: verb tr.: To cheer.
verb intr.: To make a shrill noise.
adjective: Lively; cheerful.

ETYMOLOGY: From Old English cearcian (to creak). Earliest documented use: verb: 1000, adjective: 1789.
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CHIRAK - the physicist who first identified the Golden Ratio

CHIRK - portmanteau work combining CHUCKLE and CHOK,E produced by inhaling and exhaling at the same time

CHIRE - where Russian Hobbits live

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SKEEVE

PRONUNCIATION: (skeev)

MEANING: verb tr.: To disgust.
noun: A disgusting person.

ETYMOLOGY: Probably a back-formation from skeevy (disgusting), from Italian schifare (to disgust or to loathe). Earliest documented use: verb: 1986, noun: 1990.
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SKI EVE - schussing at night

SAKE EVE - an evening sampling various rice wines

SKY EVE - if it's red, enjoy the trip, Sailor!

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SOUSE

PRONUNCIATION: (sous)

MEANING: verb tr.: 1. To soak or steep.
2. To pickle, cook in a marinade, etc.
3. To make intoxicated.
noun: 1. Something or someone soaked.
2. The liquid used in soaking.
3. Food steeped in pickle; also such liquid.
4. A drunkard.
5. A period of heavy drinking.

ETYMOLOGY: From Old French souser (to pickle). Earliest documented use: verb: 1387, noun: 1391.
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SOUSAE - more than one march

SOUME - if you don't like it, take me to court

SHOUSE - what you protect your feete with

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RADIOACTIVE

PRONUNCIATION: (ray-dee-oh-AK-tiv)

MEANING: adjective
1. Involving something extremely controversial that may rub off on others.
2. Spontaneously emitting radiation, as from an unstable atomic nucleus or in a nuclear reaction.

ETYMOLOGY: From French radio-actif, coined by Pierre and Marie Curie, from radio-, from Latin radius (beam, ray) + actif (active), from Latin activus (active). Earliest documented use: 1898.
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GRAD: IO ACTIVE - the PhD candidate found signs of volcanos on one of the moons of Jupiter

RADIO ACT LIVE - no recordings when Jack Benny appeared Sunday evenings on WJZ, 770 on your dial

RADIO-LACTIVE - why you shouldn't nurse your baby if you've been exposed to fallout

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BROAD-SPECTRUM

PRONUNCIATION: (BRAWD-SPEK-truhm)

MEANING: adjective: Effective in a wide variety of uses.

ETYMOLOGY: From broad, from Old English braed + spectrum, from Latin spectrum (appearance), from specere (to look). Earliest documented use: 1950.

NOTES: A spectrum is the range of colors that light decomposes into when passing through a prism. Over time, the word spectrum has come to refer to a range of anything...
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BROAD SPEC TRIM - remove the extra plastic form your eyeglasses

BROAD SPECTORUM - wide range of views about ghosts

BROOD-SPECTRUM - of or pertaining to the range of chickens

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HIGH OCTANE

PRONUNCIATION: (hy-AWK-tayn)

MEANING: adjective:
1. High-energy; powerful; dynamic.
2. In relation to engine fuels, having a high octane number resulting in anti-knock properties and higher efficiency.

ETYMOLOGY: Octane number is a measure of anti-knock properties of a fuel used in engines. A high octane number indicates greater resistance to engine knocking. The term octane refers to hydrocarbons with eight carbon atoms. Earliest documented use: 1931.
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HIGH OCTAVE - the rightmost thirteen keys on a piano

HIGH OCTANT - when you throw your navigation aid way up in the air

HIGH OCTASE - a condition characterized by too much of the enzyme Octase

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VIRAL

PRONUNCIATION: (VY-ruhl)

MEANING: adjective:
1. Spreading rapidly and widely from person to person, often through social media rather than traditional avenues.
2. Relating to or caused by a virus.

ETYMOLOGY: From Latin virus (poison). Earliest documented use: 1948.
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VIXAL - foxy

VIRAG - the sixth tattered cloth

VIRTAL - describing a highly productive German farm

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CRITICAL MASS

PRONUNCIATION: (KRI-ti-kuhl MAHS)

MEANING: noun: The minimum amount or number of something required to initiate or sustain a process or effect.

ETYMOLOGY: From nuclear physics where critical mass is the smallest amount of nuclear material needed for a chain reaction. Earliest documented use: 1941.
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CRITICAL MISS - blowing the foul shot that would have won the NBA title

CRITICAL MAS - according to them, no girl could ever be good enough for their son

CRIPTICAL MASS - a pseudo-religious ritual that is held in a mausoleum

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BYZANTINE

PRONUNCIATION: (BIZ-uhn-teen/tyn, bi/buh/by-ZAN/zuhn-tin/teen)

MEANING: adjective:
1. Highly complex or intricate.
2. Involving scheming or intrigue.
3. Relating to the architectural or decorative style developed in the Byzantine Empire.
4. Relating to the ancient city of Byzantium or the Byzantine Empire.

ETYMOLOGY: After Byzantium, an ancient Greek city, modern-day Istanbul. Metaphorical senses are from the complex bureaucracy, palace intrigue, and elaborate art and architecture, associated with the Byzantine Empire. Earliest documented use: 1599.
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BOZANTINE - clownish

BY Z. ANY IN E? - stockbroker discussing holdings in Zillow and Eni

BYE, ANTINE - See ya later, Toni

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EREWHONIAN

PRONUNCIATION: (er-uh-WAH/WOH-nee-uhn)

MEANING: adjective:
1. Opposed to machines, automation, or technology, like a Luddite.
2. Treating disease as crime and ill people as criminals.

ETYMOLOGY: After Erewhon, a place described in the satirical novel Erewhon (1872) by Samuel Butler. Earliest documented use: 1897.
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WERE-WHONIAN - turning into a whon during the full moon

EREWHONICAN - a citizen of Erewhonica

ERE-PHONIAN - pre-Alexander Graham Bell and his inventing

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