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Aug 21, 2017
This week’s theme
Miscellaneous words

This week’s words
parergon
deterge
trangam
transitive
synoptic

“Language is a city to the building of which every human being brought a stone.” ~Emerson
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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

Time flies when you are having fun. It doesn’t feel like it, but in a couple of years, we’ll be celebrating 25 years of Wordsmith.org.

Words are what unite this community of people in more than 170 countries. Words connect us. People have met here and gotten married. Words bring trouble too. I was once threatened with a lawsuit by an over-enthusiastic reader. That and much more has happened in all these years. I’m writing a book of anecdotes, stories, and reflections of this time. It’s tentatively titled

Wordwallah: 25 years of spreading the magic of words

I’ll be sharing drafts of excerpts in AWADmail from time to time.

Has a word brought a lump in your throat, tickled you, or left you seething? Do you have a story of your own about words and quotations and people you met at Wordsmith.org that you’d like to share? Write to me at words@wordsmith.org.

Meanwhile, we’ll see some miscellaneous words this week.

parergon

PRONUNCIATION:
(pa-RUHR-gahn)

MEANING:
noun:
1. An accessory, embellishment, or byproduct of a main work.
2. Subsidiary work undertaken in addition to one’s main employment.

ETYMOLOGY:
From Greek parergon, from para- (beside) + ergon (work). Ultimately from the Indo-European root werg- (to do), which also gave us ergonomic, work, energy, metallurgy, surgery, wright, erg, georgic, and hypergolic. Earliest documented use: 1601.

USAGE:
“‘My Century’ is something of a parergon, casually tossed off by this larger-than-life imagination.”
James Gardner; History Bites; National Review (New York); Dec 6, 1999.

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
I'd prefer to die on my feet than to live on my knees. -Charb (pen name of Stephane Charbonnier), caricaturist and journalist (21 Aug 1967-2015)

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