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Feb 23, 2021
This week’s theme
Toponyms

This week’s words
Queenborough mayor
borstal
Poplarism
Shrewsbury clock
Scarborough warning

Borstal
Borstal, 2017
Image: IMDb

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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

borstal

PRONUNCIATION:
(BOHR-stuhl)

MEANING:
noun: A reformatory for young offenders.

ETYMOLOGY:
After Borstal, a village in Kent, UK, where such an institution was first set up. Earliest documented use: 1907.

USAGE:
“Susan Smith: I was 13 when I got pregnant in 1967, and my boyfriend was 14. ... I was sentenced to two years’ ‘supervision’ and my boyfriend to six months in borstal.”
Alison Roberts; Forced Adoption; Daily Mail (London, UK); Apr 17, 2015.

“Topsy was a mixed blessing. As a result of coming from a dog borstal, she was a bit troubled and would take any opportunity to tear things up.”
Russel Brand; My Booky Wook; Hodder & Stoughton; 2007.

See more usage examples of borstal in Vocabulary.com’s dictionary.

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
The theory of democratic government is not that the will of the people is always right, but rather that normal human beings of average intelligence will, if given a chance, learn the right and best course by bitter experience. -W.E.B. Du Bois, educator, civil rights activist, and writer (23 Feb 1868-1963)

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