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Apr 9, 2007
This week's theme
Words that seem risque

This week's words

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with Anu Garg

Recently a national-award-winning children's book made news. Any book that wins a prominent award should make news but this one did it for the wrong reasons. A controversy arose because the book included the word scrotum [From Latin scrautum (quiver)].

Some self-professed protectors of human sensibilities felt that the book ought not to be in libraries -- they felt the book was inappropriate for children. Imagine if kids learned a straightforward word to describe a part of human body! Who knows, they might be scarred for life.

Well, this week's words are an antidote for such thinking. These are words that may sound risque but aren't. And if you find you haven't received the newsletter a few days this week, it's probably your email filter, working hard to protect you from getting corrupted by these words.


(teh-STAY-shuhs) Pronunciation Sound Clip

1. Having a shell.
2. Having the reddish brown color of bricks or baked clay.

From Latin testa (shell).

"I am informed by Mr. F. Smith that the male ants of several species are black, the females being testaceous."
Charles Darwin; The Descent Of Man; 1871.

See more usage examples of testaceous in Vocabulary.com's dictionary.


You have not lived today until you have done something for someone who can never repay you. -John Bunyan, preacher and author (1628-1688)

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