Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Wondrous Words Wednesday

I have missed out on Wondrous Words the last few weeks - I hate it when Real Life disrupts my online pursuits. Luckily, I just finished with The Loved One by Evelyn Waugh, which provided a ton of new words. So, prepare to learn a little about mortuary science as well as precise definitions of some more old-fashioned English words...

1. "I was always the most defatigable of hacks."

Easily tired or wearied; capable of being fatigued

2. "...his way was narrow but it was dignified and umbrageous and it led to limitless distances."

Shady: filled with shade; "the shady side of the street"

3. "Normal disposal is by inhumement, entombment, inurnment or immurement..."

Inhumement: Burial, the act of placing a person or object into the ground

Inurnment: The placing of cremated remains in an urn.

Immurement: To entomb in walls. (This also has a darker definition, referring to the execution of a prisoner by walling them up in a building - think The Cask of Amontillado.)

4. "There was no catafalque."

A decorated bier on which a coffin rests in state during a funeral.

5. "They don't sing an orison like birds."

Prayer; reverent petition to a deity.

6. "Funerals a specialty; Panegyrics in prose or poetry."

A formal speech or opus publicly praising someone.

I do love the specialized vocabulary you pick up with each book you read. That's one of the reasons I love this meme - I am always finding new words and it's a good reminder to look them up, rather than just depending on context.

What new words did YOU learn this week?


bermudaonion said...

For some odd reason, I knew catafalque when I saw it. I'm sure I could never have called one by it's name, though. I'll be looking for your review of The Loved One - it sounds rather creepy. Thanks for participating.

Lisa notes... said...

I agree with you--this meme encourages me to go ahead and look up the words instead of just guessing. And yes, I love reading books with a specialty because it often opens me up to a whole new vocabulary

Your list was really hard! Thanks for sharing.

Scott said...

Next to inhumement and immurement, inurnment looks made-up. Like inboxment or inmayonnaisejarment.

Lisa said...

Okay, "inmayonnaisejarment" made me laugh out loud. But inurnment is an actual word - a funny word, but in the dictionary.

avisannschild said...

I can explain why Kathy knew catafalque when she saw it! It's been mentioned a couple of times in WWW posts before... (It's not a bad thing to mention it again; it certainly helps me remember what these obscure words mean!)

You found so many good words this week! I wasn't familiar with most of them. I especially like this sentence: ""Normal disposal is by inhumement, entombment, inurnment or immurement..." Three for the price of one!

avisannschild said...

Oh and inmayonnaisejarment is a great neologism!

Margot said...

I know your book is about a serious subject but it seemed humorous this week. Probably all those "ment" words. I, too, look forward to your review. I read Evelyn Waugh many years ago, but not this one.