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Feb 26, 2024
This week’s theme
Adjectives

This week’s words
alible

alible
Illustration: Anu Garg + AI

Previous week’s theme
Words for prisons
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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

The adjective has a bad rep, and for good reason. Use too many and it looks to the reader as if you are hitting them over the head, telling them how to feel:

The stubborn child demanded that his annoyed parents buy him the latest toy shown on TV.

Consider instead:

His foot pounded the floor with each “I want it!” as he pointed at the toy commercial on TV. His parents exchanged glances.

Look ma, no adjectives!

That said, the adjective has its place. I used two in the very first sentence of this intro. A judicious use of this part of speech doesn’t hurt. This week we enrich your writing pantry with five unusual adjectives. Use them sparingly, like spices in a preparation.

alible

PRONUNCIATION:
(AL-uh-buhl)

MEANING:
adjective: Nutritious; nourishing.

ETYMOLOGY:
From Latin alere (to nourish). Ultimately from the Indo-European root al- (to grow or to nourish), which also gave us adolescent, adult, old, alumnus, altitude, enhance, coalesce, prolific, altricial, adolesce, hauteur, and palimony. Earliest documented use: 1653.

USAGE:
“Men who reached their seventies were often stooped and frail, but Guma Vetalda had been reared on mountain air and the alible food of Yscalin.”
Samantha Shannon; A Day of Fallen Night; Bloomsbury; 2023.

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
The greatest happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved -- loved for ourselves, or rather, loved in spite of ourselves. -Victor Hugo, novelist and dramatist (26 Feb 1802-1885)

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