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Jul 22, 2022
This week’s theme
Words illustrated with AI

This week’s words
speechify
agrostology
smilet
tergiversation
meta

meta
Illustration: Anu Garg × DALL·E AI

This week’s comments
AWADmail 1047

Next week’s theme
Words derived after names
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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

meta

PRONUNCIATION:
(MEH-tuh)

MEANING:
adjective:1. Self-referential.
 2. Relating to members of its own category.
adverb:In a self-referential manner.
noun:Something that is self-referential.
prefix:Denoting transformation, transcending, going beyond, etc.

NOTES:
Lisa del Giocondo (1479-1542), the model for the Mona Lisa painting, died today 480 years ago on Jul 15.

ETYMOLOGY:
From Greek meta (after, beyond, behind, beside, among, etc.). Earliest documented use: 1838.

USAGE:
“The watchers became the watched. It was all so very meta.”
Sean Williams, et al; Solaris Rising 3; Solaris; 2014.

“A new comedy about fantasy football, which follows a group of armchair quarterbacks as they try to tackle life. How meta would it be if people started betting on what was going to happen on the show?”
TV Guide; Oct 26, 2009.

More meta examples: Graffiti in Paris. This sentence has five words.
What are your favorite examples of meta? Share below or email us at words@wordsmith.org. As always, include your location (city, state).

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
Illness is in part what the world has done to a victim, but in a larger part it is what the victim has done with his world. -Karl A. Menninger, psychiatrist (22 Jul 1893-1990)

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