Wordsmith.org: the magic of words


A.Word.A.Day

About | Media | Search | Contact  


Home

Today's Word

Yesterday's Word

Archives

FAQ



May 3, 2012
This week's theme
Eponyms

This week's words
mentor
nestor
tartar
hector
satyr

Hector, Helen, Paris
Hector hectoring Paris. Helen is in the middle.
Art: Pierre Claude François Delorme

Discuss
Feedback
RSS/XML
Bookmark and Share Facebook Twitter Digg MySpace Bookmark and Share
A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

hector

PRONUNCIATION:
(HEK-tuhr)

MEANING:
noun: A bully or a blusterer.
verb tr., intr.: To bully or to bluster.

ETYMOLOGY:
After Hector, a Trojan hero in Greek mythology. He was killed by Achilles. The name is derived from Greek hektor (holding fast). In the mid-1600s the term was applied to hoodlums on London streets. Earliest documented use: before 1387.

NOTES:
Hector is a brave and dutiful character, but unfortunately his name is now sullied in the language. Paris's abduction of Helen brought war to Troy, yet he now refuses to fight and instead spends time with Helen. In the painting Hector admonishes Paris who then trades his wreath for his helmet.

USAGE:
"Older children pulled at my beard, Jewish children hectored me with eligibility questions."
Tom Chiarella; A Man's Guide to the Holidays; Esquire (New York); Dec 2011.

See more usage examples of hector in Vocabulary.com's dictionary.

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
One who condones evils is just as guilty as the one who perpetrates it. -Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., civil-rights leader (1929-1968)

We need your help

Help us continue to spread the magic of words to readers everywhere

Donate

Subscriber Services
Awards | Stats | Links | Privacy Policy
Contribute | Advertise

© 1994-2018 Wordsmith