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A.Word.A.Day--roman holiday

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Roman holiday (RO-muhn HOL-i-day) noun

An entertainment event where pleasure is derived from watching gore and barbarism.

[From the gladiatorial contests held in ancient Rome.]

"There were his young barbarians all at play;
There was their Dacian mother: he, their sire,
Butcher'd to make a Roman holiday!"
Lord Byron; Childe Harold's Pilgrimage; Canto iv. Stanza 141.

"Perry Ryan: I think maybe the press was a bit sensational because they were disappointed that the female sheriff they thought was going to perform the execution didn't actually do it, and as a consequence, the story became what a Roman holiday that this was in Owensboro."
Laurie Howell; Last Public Execution That Was Held in Owensboro, Kentucky, in 1936; Weekly Edition - National Public Radio (Washington, DC); May 5, 2001.

This week's theme: toponyms or words derived from place names.


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