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harridan (HAR-i-dn) noun

An ill-tempered, scolding woman.

[Perhaps from French haridelle (worn-out horse, gaunt woman).]

"For us, the most revealing of the remarks attributed to the Heritage harridan were these: `I will beat you and nothing will happen. You can go to court, all the judges know Jocelyn Chiwenga, wife of the (army) commander. The judges will do nothing.'" 'All judges know Jocelyn Chiwenga'; Zimbabwe Independent (Harare); Mar 28, 2003.

"A harridan committee chairwoman, Libby Hauser, acted sneeringly by Dana Ivey, all but tosses bubbly, babbling Elle out of a hearing room." Malcolm Johnson; `Blonde 2' Is Blithely Bubbly; Hartford Courant (Connecticut); Jul 2, 2003.

This week's theme: words of horse-related origins.


After two years in Washington, I often long for the realism and sincerity of Hollywood. -Fred Thompson, US senator, lawyer, writer, and actor (1942- )

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