Set 42 – Five New Words for Feb 11

Theme: Words formed in error

1. belfry  (BEL-free)

1. A bell tower; also the part of a tower where a bell is hung.
2. Head. Usually in the phrase to have bats in the belfry, meaning to be crazy.

2. ambage (AM-bij)

noun: Ambiguity; circumlocution (= the use of many words where fewer would do, especially in a deliberate attempt to be vague or evasive. ).

“This increase in ambage measures increased arbitrariness.”

Type of:
verboseness, verbosity
an expressive style that uses excessive or empty words

3. arrant (AR-uhnt)

adjective: Complete; thorough.

“Norman Macrae also dismissed the Club of Rome’s prediction that the world was about to run out of food as arrant nonsense.”

4. sashay

verb intr.:
1. To move, walk, or glide along nonchalantly.
2. To strut or move in a showy manner.

“Tyler switched to 6th Street, the car swaying and sashaying through the leafy old homes of Hancock Park.”

5. viperine (VY-puhr-in, -puh-ryn)

adjective: Of or relating to a viper; venomous; malicious.

“The musical taught a generation of viperine office politicians how to stick a shiv into their bosses without leaving any fingerprints on the handle.”


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.”

Set 40 – Five New Words for Feb 9

Theme – card games

1. euchre (YOO-kuhr)

verb tr.: To cheat, trick, or outwit.
noun: A card game for two to four players usually played with the 32 highest cards in the pack.

“You got euchred. The company lied to you about its status and you foolishly bought its lie.”

2. vole (vohl)

noun:    1. Any of various rodents of the genus Microtus and related genera.
2. The winning of all the tricks in some card games.
verb intr.:    3. To risk everything in the hope of great rewards. Typically used in the phrase “go the vole”.
4. To try every possibility.

“So, as I was determined to go the vole, I have taken care you shall dip as deep as I.”

3. house of cards

noun: Something insecure or insubstantial that is subject to imminent collapse.

“‘We have to find a new balance,’ the pope said. ‘Otherwise even the moral edifice of the church is likely to fall like a house of cards.'”

4. spoof

noun:    1. A light, good-humored imitation; parody.
2. A hoax or a prank.
verb tr.:    1. To satirize gently.
2. To fool using a hoax or a prank.

“Some hilarious videos doing the rounds on the Internet show people pretending to take photos with invisible iPhones and hold conversations on them. These spoofs are meant to poke fun at Apple and its legion of fans.”

5. trump card

noun:    1. In card games, a suit chosen to rank above the others.
2. Something that gives an overriding, decisive advantage.

“How big a factor might home advantage be for Kilkenny? Potentially, it could be their trump card.”

Set 39 – Five New Words For Feb 8

Miscellaneous words

1. acuity

noun: Sharpness; keenness.
“Birds seek out their own food and build nests for their eggs, some have the mental acuity to know of approaching storms and they may huddle together for warmth when it is cold.”

2. desuetude (DES-wi-tood, -tyood)
noun: A state of disuse.
“Far from being a high-tech wonder, the Earth Station had a sad, neglected air about it, a feeling of desuetude and abandonment.”

3. turgid

1. Swollen; congested.
2. Pompous; high-flown.

“It’s not surprising that [Norm Macdonald] would take the wind out of the sails of peers who write turgid, self-important autobiographies … he has earned attention for his deflating Twitter responses to various celebrity tweets.”

4. sciolism (SY-uh-liz-uhm)

noun: Pretentious display of superficial knowledge.

“This consists of some of the dullest sciolism in the history of prose, a standardized academic jargon and rhetoric, the dutiful rehearsal of received theory, and the deliberate misrepresentation of anything challenging or rejecting academic postmodernism.”

5. edacity (i-DAS-i-tee)

noun: Greediness; good appetite.

“Allender is still undaunted, but hungry, not with the reckless experience appetite of a kid, but rather with the edacity of an older gourmand who wants as much of what he loves as possible.”

Set 38 – Five New Words For Feb 7

Theme 20-letter words

1. polyphiloprogenitive (pol-ee-fi-luh-pro-JEN-uh-tiv)

adjective: Extremely prolific.*

“Polyphiloprogenitive Joe Fallon, the needy, breedy father of seventeen, or was it nineteen? I was never sure, any more than Joe himself.”

“All spring and summer my parents ricochet from garden to garden, mulching, watering, pulling up the polyphiloprogenitive weeds, ‘until’, my mother says, ‘I’m bent over like a coat hanger.'”

*prolific – adjective
1.(of a plant, animal, or person) producing much fruit or foliage or many offspring.
2. present in large numbers or quantities; plentiful.

2. Little Lord Fauntleroy (lit-l lord FONT-luh-roi)

noun: An innocent child; also a very polite and well-dressed child.

“As for you in the back, Little Lord Fauntleroy, get used to it, to the real world. And maybe tell them Daddy’ll be coming in the Dacia tomorrow.”

3. anthropomorphization (an-thruh-puh-mor-fy-ZAY-shuhn)

noun: Attribution of human qualities to things not human.

“But for the most part she simply relished the anthropomorphization. That the word pencil was masculine lent each pencil a boyish mischievousness. That flower was feminine endowed flowers with a maternal dignity.”

4. silk-stocking district (SILK-STOK-ing dis-trikt)

noun: A part of a city inhabited by the rich and powerful.

“In New York years ago, cops in the silk-stocking district of the Upper East Side knew how to tie a bow tie for a young man without the experience to do it himself.”

5. secret of Polichinelle (SEE-krit uv po-LISH-i-nel)

noun: A supposed secret that’s widely known: an open secret.

“The tsar waited until after the memorial services on the fortieth day after the empress’s death … and announced that he had decided to marry Katya. The games between the tsar and the minister, the secret of Polichinelle, were over.”

“How often has she taunted me with lack of dignified reserve and needful caution! How many times has she saucily insinuated that all my affairs are the secret of Polichinelle!”


Article 3 for Dec 3

I read two articles on International Relations in Mathrubhoomi.

1. ഇറാന്‍ മാറുന്നു ലോകവും ( Iran Changes, also does the World) by P T Baby

ആണവപദ്ധതികള്‍ = nuclear ambition
ഗുണഭോക്താക്കള്‍ = Beneficiaries
ഉപരോധങ്ങൾ = Sanctions
സഖ്യ കക്ഷികൾ  = NATO
സമ്പദ്ഘടനയുടെ =  Economy
മിതവാദി = Moderate
സമ്പുഷ്ടീകരണം = Enrichment
പരിമിതം = Restricted
പശ്ചിമേഷ്യയിലെ = West Asia
ധാരണകൾ  = agreements
ആഭ്യന്തരയുദ്ധം = Civil  War
സമ്മേളനം = conference
രാസായുധം = chemical weapons
സമ്മർദം  = Pressure
ബാന്ധവം = alliance
ആണവനിയന്ത്രണക്കരാർ = Nuclear Non -proliferation  treaty
മന്ദീഭവിപ്പിക്കുക = decelerate
അന്താരാഷ്ട്ര ആണവോര്‍ജ ഏജന്‍സി = IAEA

2. കിഴക്കന്‍ ചൈനാ കടലിലെ ശീതയുദ്ധം (Cold War in East China Sea) by C C Jacob

വ്യോമപ്രതിരോധ തിരിച്ചറിയല്‍ മേഖല  =  Air Defense Identification  Zone
യാത്രോദ്ദേശ്യം = Flight  Plan
അടിയന്തര പ്രതിരോധനടപടി = emergency defensive measures
പരമാധികാരം = Sovereignty
പ്രക്ഷോഭം = agitation
പ്രകോപിപ്പിക്കുക = provoke
എണ്ണനിക്ഷേപം = oil  deposits
തന്ത്രപ്രധാന കപ്പല്‍ ഗതാഗത മേഖല =  Unknown (strategically important naval zone) [might be]
നയതന്ത്രലക്ഷ്യങ്ങളും = Strategic Goals
വിന്യസിക്കുക = to  deploy
വ്യാഖ്യാനം = Interpretation
നവദേശീയവാദം = neo -nationalism
ആശങ്ക = apprehension
സാമ്രാജ്യത്വ വാദം = Imperialism

This article about the China – Japanese dispute is really good. People interested in Diplomacy should read this.

Article 2 For Dec 2 – ഹയാൻ നല്കുന്ന പാഠം (Lessons from Haiyan)

A scientific article ഹയാൻ നല്കുന്ന പാഠം  or Lessons from Haiyan, on the devastating tropical cyclon Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda that hit Philippines particularly is next in line. Written by Dr. C. M. Joy and published in Janmabhoomi, it lists out the various reasons as to why the cyclone caused so much destruction and gives a caution to Keralaites that we should take adequate measures since Kerala also shows all the demerits that had lead to this unproportionate tragedy in Philippines.

പ്രവിശ്യ = province
ഭാവനരഹിതർ = homeless
വാർത്താവിനിമയ സംവിധാനങ്ങൾ = communication channels
വിരളം = rare
സുസ്സജ്ജം = well  equipped
ആഗോളതാപനം = global warming
കാലാവസ്ഥാവ്യതിയാനം = climate change
ഉഷ്ണമേഖല കൊടുങ്കാറ്റ് = tropical cyclone
പ്രളയം = flood
സമുദ്ര ഉപരിതലം =  continental shelf (not sure )
തീരദേശ മേഖല = coastal region
കണ്ടൽകാട് = mangrove forest
പുലിമുട്ട് = Breakwater  structure
അഭാവം = deficit