words words words

I’ve been collecting more words and my blog gives me the opportunity to look them up.  I sort of knew a few of them but I needed to be reassured.  Some writer, whose name I didn’t notice, sorry, said that he always had to look up egregious. After he said that, I didn’t.  Anyway, see how much time I have

eukaryote |juːˈkarɪəʊt| (also eucaryote)

(noun) an organism consisting of a cell or cells in which the genetic material is DNA in the form of chromosomes contained within a distinct nucleus. Eukaryotes include all living organisms other than the eubacteria and archaea. Compare with prokaryote.  (Where did I find that one?)



noun [ mass noun ] N. Amer.

soft or amorphous ice formed by the accumulation of ice crystals in water that iso turbulent to freeze solid.

ORIGIN late 19th cent.: from Canadian French frasil ‘snow floating in the water’, from French fraisil ‘cinders’.


bricolage |ˌbrɪkəˈlɑːʒ|

noun (pl.same or bricolages) [ mass noun ]

(in art or literature) construction or creation from a diverse range of available things. the chaotic bricolage of the novel is brought together in a unifying gesture.

• [ count noun ] something constructed or created from a diverse range of things. bricolages of painted junk.


negentropic |ˌnɛgɛnˈtrɒpɪk|


of or characterized by a reduction in entropy (and corresponding increase in order).


negentropy noun

ORIGIN 1950s (as negentropy): from negative + entropic (see entropy) .


anhedonia |ˌanhɪˈdəʊnɪə|

noun [ mass noun ] Psychiatry

inability to feel pleasure in normally pleasurable activities.


neoteny |niːˈɒt(ə)ni|

noun [ mass noun ] Zoology

the retention of juvenile features in the adult animal. Also called paedomorphosis.

• the sexual maturity of an animal while it is still in a mainly larval state, as in the axolotl. Also called paedogenesis.

                           (What have I been reading?)


scrummy |ˈskrʌmi|

adjective (scrummier, scrummiest) informal

delicious. you can eat scrummy treats such as ice cream. if it isn't scrummy Sean Bean playing photography lecturer Paul.

ORIGIN early 20th cent.: from scrumptious + -y1.

(I’ve been saying this for years, didn’t realize it’s actually in the dictionary – the online one)


phocomelia |ˌfəʊkə(ʊ)ˈmiːlɪə|

noun [ mass noun ] Medicine

a rare congenital deformity in which the hands or feet are attached close to the trunk, the limbs being grossly underdeveloped or absent.  This condition was a side effect of the drug thalidomide taken during early pregnancy.


scumble |ˈskʌmb(ə)l| Art

verb [ with obj. ]

modify (a painting or colour) by applying a very thin coat of opaque paint to give a softer or duller effect. the area surrounding the main figures will be scumbled.

• modify (a drawing) with light shading in pencil or charcoal to give a softer effect.


a thin, opaque coat of paint or layer of shading applied to give a softer or duller effect.

• the effect produced by scumbling.

ORIGIN late 17th cent. (as a verb): perhaps a frequentative of the verb scum.


fulvous |ˈfʌlvəs, ˈfʊl-|


reddish yellow; tawny.

                  (It doesn’t sound like this, does it?)


catamite |ˈkatəmʌɪt|

noun archaic

a boy kept for homosexual practices.

                           (What was I reading??)


albedo |alˈbiːdəʊ|

noun (pl.albedos) chiefly Astronomy

the proportion of the incident light or radiation that is reflected by a surface, typically that of a planet or moon. the lunar maria have a lower albedo than the surrounding terrain.

                  (I learned about this word when I lived in Muskoka. Every year the Bass Lake Restaurant drags an old car (the same one every year) out onto the ice and invites people to guess at a dollar a shot the day, date, and time when the car sinks into the lake. Winner takes all.)


begrutten (OED)

         swollen in the face by much weeping


secant |ˈsiːk(ə)nt, ˈsɛk-|


1 (abbrev.: sec)Mathematics the ratio of the hypotenuse to the shorter side adjacent to an acute angle (in a right-angled triangle); the reciprocal of a cosine.

2 Geometry a straight line that cuts a curve in two or more parts.

ORIGIN late 16th cent.; from French sécante, based on Latin secare ‘to cut’.


clunch |klʌn(t)ʃ|

noun [ mass noun ] Brit.

soft limestone capable of being easily worked. they used clunch for most domestic building. [ as modifier ] : sections of clunch wall in the stable.

ORIGIN early 19th cent.: perhaps from dialect clunch‘lumpy, thickset’.


civet |ˈsɪvɪt|

noun(also civet cat)

1 a slender nocturnal carnivorous mammal with a barred and spotted coat and well-developed anal scent glands, native to Africa and Asia.

Family Viverridae (the civet family): several genera and species. The civet family also includes the genets, linsang, and fossa, and formerly included the mongooses. .

• [ mass noun ] a strong musky perfume obtained from the secretions of the civet's scent glands.

2 USthe ring-tailed cat or cacomistle.

ORIGIN mid 16th cent.: from French civette, from Italian zibetto, from medieval Latin zibethum, from Arabic zabād, denoting the perfume.


orbicular |ɔːˈbɪkjʊlə|

adjective technical

1 having the shape of a flat ring or disc.

2 having a spherical or rounded shape.

Geology (of a rock) containing spheroidal igneous inclusions.


That’s enough. It’s going to take a while to remember them all. I’ve been going through my Paper Desk and gathered up all the bits and scraps of paper scribbled with words I needed to look up. 

 I just picked up a piece of paper with seven words on it and found none of them in the online dictionary.  I’ll have to get out the magnifying glass and the OED and hunt for them.

 Another time.