Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Wonderous Words Wednesday (5)
BermudaOnion’s Wonderous Words Wednesday challenges us to keep track of unfamiliar words we come across when reading and share the definitions on our blogs.
As promised, all of my words this week have come from Outlander by Diana Gabaldon. This will continue for many weeks, I’m afraid! It’s a good book, but it’s LONG!
Provocateur: (noun) a person who provokes trouble, causes dissension, or the like; agitator.
“Almost an agent provocateur, wouldn’t you say, Dr. Randall?” – page 36
Epaulet: (noun) an ornamental shoulder piece worn on uniforms, chiefly by military officers.
“The buff linings of the turned-back cuffs extended a good six inches up the sleeve, and a small coil of gold braid gleamed from one epaulet.” – page 53
Recalcitrant: (adj.) resisting authority or control; not obedient or compliant; refractory.
“This generally had a good effect on recalcitrant orderlies and young interns, but appeared merely to amuse Captain Randall.” – page 56
Asperity: (noun) harshness or sharpness of tone, temper, or manner; severity; acrimony.
“’I can dress the wound, yes,’ I said with considerable asperity.” – page 64
Runcible: 1871, a nonsense word coined by Edward Lear; used especially in runcible spoon "spoon with three short tines like a fork," which first took the name 1926.
“I’d never tried to eat a herring with a spoon, but I saw nothing resembling a fork, and dimly recalled that runcible spoons would not be in general use for quite a few years yet.” – page 104