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zambuk

/ˈzambʌk/
noun
informal Australian, New Zealand
A first-aider, especially a member of the St John Ambulance.

Origin
Early 20th century the proprietary name of a type of antiseptic ointment.

==========

In a pandemic, we come to realize the importance of every zambuk on the job.

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gonfalon

/ˈɡɒnf(ə)lən/
noun
A banner or pennant, especially one with streamers, hung from a crossbar.

Origin
Late 16th century from Italian gonfalone, from a Germanic compound whose second element is related to vane.

==========

There is no need to be shy about it. Proudly display your very own gonfalon.

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minibeast

/ˈmɪnibiːst/
noun
informal British
A small invertebrate animal such as an insect or spider.

==========

Marco did not appreciate the presence of minibeasts in his room, though at least one of them was anticipating pleasure.

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exaptation

Pronunciation /ˌɛksapˈteɪʃ(ə)n/
noun
mass noun
1 Biology
The process by which features acquire functions for which they were not originally adapted or selected.
1.1 count noun A character or feature which evolved by the process of exaptation.

Origin
1980s from ex- + aptation as in adaptation.

==========

Every table leg ever made is, in a sense, an exaptation of a tree's strong, woody trunk.

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abseil

/ˈabseɪl/ /ˈabzʌɪl/
verb
[no object] British
Descend a rock face or other near-vertical surface by using a doubled rope coiled round the body and fixed at a higher point.
noun
British
A descent made by abseiling.

Origin
Early 20th century from German abseilen, from ab ‘down’ + Seil ‘rope’.

==========

Jonathan had hopes of being a social climber. The best he could accomplish was an assisted abseil.

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vibrant

/ˈvʌɪbr(ə)nt/
adjective
1 Full of energy and life.
1.1 (of color) bright and striking.
1.2 (of sound) strong or resonating.
2 Quivering; pulsating.

Origin
Early 17th century (in the sense ‘moving rapidly, vibrating’): from Latin vibrant- ‘shaking to and fro’, from the verb vibrare (see vibrate).

==========

There are times when being vibrant is also excessive.

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bonce

/bɒns/
noun
informal British
A person's head.

Origin
Mid 19th century (denoting a large marble): of unknown origin.

==========

It took more than once
Of rapping on his bonce
To wake him from his slumber
To write down today's number.

-----

La palabra del día viene en mitad del día.

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ashlar

/ˈaʃlə/
noun
mass noun
1 Masonry made of large square-cut stones, used as a facing on walls of brick or stone rubble.
1.1 count noun A stone used in ashlar.

Origin
Middle English from Old French aisselier from Latin axilla, diminutive of axis ‘plank’.

==========

Actual ashlar walls make a very appealing facade for a building, though they take more work to accomplish than brick.

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pootle

/ˈpuːt(ə)l/
verb
informal British no object, with adverbial of direction
Move or travel in a leisurely manner.

Origin
1970s blend of the verbs poodle and tootle.

==========

Paul and Pat, pootled along on their way to town. They were going to be too early to go straight to the movie theater, though a little too late for supper before the show. Maybe they'd get a cup of coffee and watch the crowd rush by their outdoor seating.

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lucernal

Of or pertaining to a lamp or other artificial light.

==========

There is no night so dark that the cities' lucernal glow cannot be seen from the space station.

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love apple

noun
archaic
A tomato.
‘The tomato used to be called the love apple and this is nothing to do with its passionate color or suggestive shape.’

==========

One hopes some local love apple plants survived the deluge of hurricane Isaias.

gîte

/ʒiːt/ /ʒit/
noun
A furnished holiday house in France, typically in a rural district.

French, related to gésir ‘to lie’.

It may be unfair to cheat,
But I still think that it's neat
To accomplish this tricky feat
With a new word like gîte.

With letters just four
No search (which needs more)
Can be had; that's for sure.
As a result, we skip that chore.

Straight on to the sample
Even though weak example
Never had cash that was ample
So through France could not trample.

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xiphoid

/ˈzɪfɔɪd/
adjective
technical
Sword-shaped.

Origin
Mid 18th century from Greek xiphoeidēs, from xiphos ‘sword’.

==========

Using a process known only to himself, after becoming a knight, Sir Rodney named his sword "Xyphoid".

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guddle

/ˈɡʌd(ə)l/
verb
[no object] Scottish
1 Fish with the hands by groping under the stones or banks of a stream.
1.1 with object Catch (a fish) by guddling.

Origin
Mid 17th century of unknown origin.

==========

I suspect guddling at the stream's bank is typically less successful than using a dry fly.

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fraught

/frɔːt/
adjective
1 fraught with (of a situation or course of action) filled with or likely to result in (something undesirable)
2 Causing or affected by anxiety or stress.

Origin
Late Middle English, ‘laden, equipped’, Compare with freight.

==========

Marvin mostly managed life's baggage, and diligently tried tried to hide it in times fraught with stress. Unfortunately, recent events were rife with those times.

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spaghettification

/spəɡɛtifɪˈkeɪʃ(ə)n/
noun
mass noun Physics
The process by which (in some theories) an object would be stretched and ripped apart by gravitational forces on falling into a black hole.
‘The extreme tidal forces would stretch the observer head to foot; this effect is called spaghettification.’

==========

According to advertising legend, spaghettification may have begun on Wednesdays in Boston, Massachusetts.

Listen, now, to what I say
Because it’ll turn out fine, okay?
With these words, please play.
Do a little bit every day.

You may think you are too shy
To even make a little try,
But none of us are always spry.
It takes some time to learn to fly.

Begin today; no do not wait.
Something close. You can relate,
Even something less than great.
Build your skills. Don’t hesitate!


Show thread

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preternatural

(also praeternatural)
/ˌpriːtəˈnatʃ(ə)r(ə)l/
adjective
Beyond what is normal or natural.

Origin
Preternatural derives from the Latin praeter naturam, which means "beyond nature."

==========

The goal of this daily topic is to create, in others, the preternatural ability to flawlessly use English.

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grebo

/ˈɡriːbəʊ/
noun grebos
informal British
A youth favouring heavy metal or punk rock music, and having long hair.

Origin
1980s perhaps from greaser, on the pattern of words such as dumbo.

==========

Greg grumbled grievously when called a grebo. He just liked his hair long.

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herbary

/ˈhəːbəri/
noun herbaries
archaic
A herb garden.

=====-=====

I suspect that the main reason that "herbary" has become an archaic word is that those little jars in the cupboard are so much easier to deal with.

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