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A.Word.A.Daywith Anu Garg
This week marks the quindecennial of Wordsmith.org. Fifteen years ago, on Mar 14, 1994, the first word went out to a handful of grad school friends. Since then, here's the journey in numbers: 15 years, 200 countries, 4000 words, 700,000 subscribers, who share our infinite enjoyment of words.
To mark the milestone, this week we'll feature words that are 15 letters long. And a contest for you.
Today's 15-letter word infundibuliform can be defined in exactly 15 letters as "shaped as a funnel". For the other four words this week, can you likewise provide definitions that are exactly 15 letters each? We'll select four winning definitions, one for each of the words. Winners will receive their choice of an autographed copy of a book by Anu Garg. Send your definitions to (contest at wordsmith.org) by Friday (replace at with @). And while you are at it, let us know where you are writing from. (Results)
ETYMOLOGY:From Latin infundibulum (funnel), from infundere (to pour in), from fundere (to pour). Ultimately from the Indo-European root gheu- (to pour) that is also the source of funnel, font, fuse, diffuse, gust, gush, and geyser.
USAGE:"[Yossarian] might have remained in the hospital until doomsday had it not been for that patriotic Texan with his infundibuliform jowls and his lumply rumpleheaded, indestructible smile." Joseph Heller; Catch-22; Simon & Schuster; 1961.
A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:I live my life in widening circles that reach out across the world. I may not complete this last one but I give myself to it. -Rainer Maria Rilke, poet and novelist (1875-1926)