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Apr 29, 2021
This week’s theme
Words made with animal parts

This week’s words
rostrum
carapace
hackle
pinnacle
hightail

pinnacle
Pinnacles on King’s College Chapel, Cambridge, UK
Photo: Dmitry Tonkonog / Wikimedia

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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

pinnacle

PRONUNCIATION:
(PIN-uh-kuhl)

MEANING:
noun:1. The highest point.
 2. An architectural ornament capping a tower, buttress, etc.
verb tr.:1. To reach the peak of achievement, development, etc.
 2. To form a pinnacle.

ETYMOLOGY:
From Old French, from Latin pinnaculum, diminutive of pinna (wing, feather). Ultimately from the Indo-European root pet- (to rush or fly), which also gave us feather, petition, compete, perpetual, pterodactyl, helicopter, appetence, asymptomatic, empennage, impetuous, pencel, peripeteia, petulant, propitious, pinnate, and lepidopterology (study of butterflies and moths). Earliest documented use: 1330.

USAGE:
“From then on began a remarkable journey of perseverance, courage, and fortitude that propelled Nadella to the pinnacle of Microsoft.”
Raj Chengappa; Microsoft’s Satya Nadella Has a Message for You; India Today (New Delhi); Oct 2, 2017.

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

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
A bookstore is one of the only pieces of evidence we have that people are still thinking. -Jerry Seinfeld, comedian (b. 29 Apr 1954)

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