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May 8, 2020
This week’s theme
Words related to the hand

This week’s words
handfast
repugnant
backhanded
ironfisted
dead hand

This week’s comments
AWADmail 932

Next week’s theme
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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

dead hand

PRONUNCIATION:
(DED hand)

MEANING:
noun:
1. The stifling influence of something, especially of the past on the present.
2. The perpetual ownership of property by institutions, such as churches.

ETYMOLOGY:
A literal translation of the term mortmain. Earliest documented use: 1615.

USAGE:
“If the corona curves continue to crest, Covid-19 might expose as much about the dead hand of capitalism (the corruption, the hubris, the greed) as Chernobyl ever did about communism.”
Ben Schott; Diary; The Spectator (London, UK); Apr 4, 2020.

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

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
If they can get you asking the wrong questions, they don't have to worry about the answers. -Thomas Pynchon, novelist (b. 8 May 1937)

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