The obscure word of the week’s sources

This week I thought I’d share some of the sources for my obscure words. They come from several places but mostly my collection of dictionaries, which includes Webster’s Unabridged Third New International and the 11-volume First Edition of the Oxford English Dictionary, which I have in its two-volume micro-print edition of 1970 – four pages … More The obscure word of the week’s sources

The most important election in decades

New Zealand’s upcoming election is, without question, one of the most important the country has held in decades. It isn’t just a matter of policies to manoeuvre the country through the churning waters of Covid-19. It’s more fundamental. The neo-liberal paradigm that has essentially been the governmental ‘operating system’ since the 1980s is well past … More The most important election in decades

The obscure word of the week is adsum

This week’s obscure English word is adsum. It is directly from Latin and means to indicate one’s presence, for instance during a roll call. Usually, of course, the answer is simply ‘here’. One can imagine it being used at assembly in any large English boarding school: Headmaster: Timpton Minor! Timpton: Adsum, sir. Headmaster: Ah yes. … More The obscure word of the week is adsum

The obscure word of the week is empanoply

This week’s obscure English word is empanoply. It means to enclose in a full suit of armour. It’s related, of course, to the word ‘panoply’, which today means an impressive display or collection; the prefix ’em-‘ means ‘to apply’ in this case. And I guess a fully-armoured knight was, indeed, a pretty impressive display. The … More The obscure word of the week is empanoply

The obscure word of the week is paroicous

This week’s obscure English word is paroicous. According to my Unabridged Websters Third International dictionary it means ‘having archegonia and anthiredia on the same branch with the antheridia’. This is correct information, but it’s about as informative as being poked in the eye with a stick. The more informative meaning is that this is a … More The obscure word of the week is paroicous