But it does give your brain a little workout. I'm talking about Wondrous Words Wednesday, a weekly meme hosted by Kathy from BermudaOnion's Weblog.
Today's words are brought to you by the letter 'D', and hail from my trusty 365 New Words-a-Year calendar. Without further ado, here are my 'D' words.
1. declivity: downward inclination; descending slope
Debbie was afraid to ride her bike down the steep declivity; she feared that riding over a pebble or rock would cause her to lose her balance.
This word has the Latin word clivus in it, which means slope or hill. Other words that contain clivus include acclivity, which means an upward slope, and proclivity, which means leaning or toward, and refers to a personal inclination or predisposition. (I knew proclivity, but not declivity or acclivity.)
2. doch-an-dorris: a parting drink; stirrup cup
Desmond declined the doch-an-dorris because he was the designated driver.
Doch-an-dorris quite literally means "drink of the door", in Scottish Gaelic (deoch an doruis) and Irish (deoch an dorais). The English version is stirrup cup. I Googled "stirrup cup" and learned that it's a parting drink given to guests, especially when they are leaving on horseback (with their feet in stirrups). It's also a drink--like port or sherry--served before a traditional foxhunt. This term can also mean the cup that such a drink is served in.
3. dundrearies: long, flowing sideburns
Dundrearies were quite fashionable for English and American men between 1840 and 1870.
Often capitalized, this term comes from the name of Lord Dundreary, a character who wore long sideburns (called "Piccadilly weepers" in England) in the play Our American Cousin by Tom Taylor. According to Wikipedia, Lord Dundreary is "the personification of a good-natured, brainless aristocrat".
|Ed Sothern as Lord Dundreary, courtesy of Wikipedia|
What new words have you recently discovered?