I could resist no longer. Wondrous Words Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Kathy from Bermudaonion's Weblog. Every Wednesday for the past few months, I've been visiting this exemplary book blog and adding Kathy's new words to my own growing vocabulary list. This week, though, I decided to try the meme myself, using some of the foreign words I've encountered during my recent reading. I hope it doesn't seem tacky or odd to use foreign words in English sentences. I wanted to do something a bit different with this meme, and these words caught my attention.
1. abbondanza: Italian word meaning abundance, plenty, copiousness (a cornucopia is a corno dell'abbondanza)
The abbondanza of Rome's outdoor markets sounds incredible.
2. ponentino: Italian word for the little west wind that blows at the end of the day; a romantic breeze
As the tired couple walked by the lake, the ponentino freshened their outlooks.
I love the beauty of these two Italian words, in sound and meaning, which I discovered in Keeping the Feast: One Couple's Story of Love, Food, and Healing in Italy, written by Paula Butturini. Because I have an uncorrected proof for limited distribution, rather than the final, quotable edition, I've written my own sentences to help convey the meaning of these words.
3. hsiao ch'ih: Chinese word meaning little eats
"Some days Betsy takes me out for American coffee, toast, and butter; sometimes I take Betsy into alleys for hsiao ch'ih--little eats, dumplings of glutinous rice wrapped in reed leaves or cakes made from cassia petals and sugar."
This is from Shanghai Girls by Lisa See.
What new words have you discovered during recent reading?