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Sep 11, 2020
This week’s theme
Eponyms

This week’s words
Ballardian
Griselda
Homeric
Juno
Pavlovian

Pavlovian
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Words that aren't what they appear to be
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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

Pavlovian

PRONUNCIATION:
(pav-LO-vee-uhn)

MEANING:
adjective: Relating to a conditioned or predictable response; automatic; involuntary.

ETYMOLOGY:
After the physiologist Ivan Pavlov (1849-1936), known for his work in classical conditioning. Earliest documented use: 1922.

NOTES:
In an experiment, Pavlov rang a bell when he offered a dog some food. After a while the dog began to associate the sound with food and salivated just at the sound of the bell. For a change of perspective, see this cartoon.

USAGE:
“It wasn’t that I actively disliked football, it was more a Pavlovian response to having spent every weekend travelling from stadium to stadium for five long years with my ex.”
Lindsey Kelk; One in a Million; HarperCollins; 2018.

See more usage examples of Pavlovian in Vocabulary.com’s dictionary.

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
A straw vote only shows which way the hot air blows. -O. Henry, short-story writer (11 Sep 1862-1910)

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