Friday, 7 December 2007

A.W.A.D. - Miscellaineous Words

Order is good. Mostly. It makes sure that the earth will go around the sun in the same way as it has in the past and bring summer to ripen the mangoes. Patterns are good too -- most of the time. They help us find our shoes easily among an array of other pairs.

But if we stick too much to the same order and pattern, we lose. We lose the opportunity to discover new lands, new paths, new flowers, new ways (and new words!). Sometimes the break in order is by choice and at times it's forced, as when you lose a job. Often it's a blessing in disguise. It's an opportunity to explore and discover what remained hidden on the old path.

This week's words have no order, pattern, or theme. They just are. But they're all interesting.

vilipend
(VIL-uh-pend) verb tr.
1. To treat someone with contempt.
2. To disparage.

[From Old French vilipender, from Latin vilipendere, from vilis (cheap, worthless) + pendere (to consider). The words vilify, vile, revile, and venal are all cousins of this word.]

adscititious
(ad-si-TISH-uhs) adjective
Derived from outside; external; additional.

[From Latin adscitus, past participle of adsciscere (to admit or adopt), from ad- (toward) + sciscere (to seek to know), from scire (to know). Ultimately from the Indo-European root skei- (to cut or split) that also gave us schism, ski, and shin.]

interpellate
(in-tuhr-PEL-ayt) verb tr.
To question formally, an official, a member of government, etc.

[From Latin interpellatus, past participle of interpellare (to interrupt), from inter- (between) + pellare (to thrust).]

serotine
(SER-uh-tin, -tyn) adjective
Late in occurring, forming, or flowering.
noun
A small brown bat
(Eptesicus serotinus) native of Europe and Asia (named after its habit of appearing late in the evening).

[From Latin serotinus (belated), from serus (late).]

superficies
(soo-puhr-FISH-ee-eez) noun
Outer surface or appearance of something or someone.

[From Latin superficies, from super (over, above) + facies (form, face), from facere (to make or do). Ultimately from the Indo-European root dhe- (to set or put) that is also the source of do, deed, factory, fashion, face, rectify, defeat, sacrifice, satisfy, Sanskrit sandhi (literally,joining), Urdu purdah (literally, veil or curtain), and Russian duma (council).]

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