Set 41 – Five New Words for Feb 10

Theme – Words from Royalty

1. interregnum

noun: The period between the end of a reign and the beginning of the next; a time when there is no ruler.

“Janet Yellen was acting chairwoman during the weekend interregnum.”

2. basilic

adjective: Kingly; royal.

Many things are named after this kingly word: plants, animals, architecture, and more. Basil, the aromatic herb of the mint family, is named so because it was used in royal preparations for medicine, bath, etc. A large vein of the upper arm is called the basilic vein due to its supposed importance. The basilisk lizard (and the legendary reptile) are named for their crown-like crest. In ancient Rome, a basilica was a large public court building and the word began to be applied to churches of the same form.

“The fair Prince Filiberto solemnly approached the Pope. … ‘Are You quite good now?’ the boy continued, with great black basilic eyes.”

3. kingdom come

1. The next world; heaven.
2. A place or future time very remote; the end of time.

“Television channels have found a lazy template, putting out one or the other opinion poll every week and discussing it till kingdom come.”

4. royal road

noun: An easy way to achieve something.

According to the philosopher Proclus, when King Ptolemy asked for an easy way to learn, Euclid replied that there is no royal road to geometry. Royal Road was a highway in ancient Persia. Earliest documented use: 1793.

“Although no royal road for malaria control exists, research can provide solutions.”

5. kingmaker

noun: A person or organization having great power and influence in the selection of a candidate for an important position.

The term was originally applied to Richard Neville, 16th Earl of Warwick, as “Warwick the Kingmaker” during the Wars of the Roses. Earliest documented use: 1595.

“In recruiting them for SNL, Lorne Michaels has played kingmaker to some of US comedy’s biggest names. ‘Think the Godfather with a whoopee cushion’, one critic wrote.”


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