Word of the Day

Word of the day

Thursday, March 01, 2018

aberration

[ ab-uh-rey-shuh n ]

noun

the act of departing from the right, normal, or usual course.

learn about the english language

What is the origin of aberration?

The English noun aberration has wandered far from its Latin original. Cicero (106-43 b.c.) is the first (and only) Latin author to use the noun aberrātiō “distraction, diversion, relief (from pain or sorrow).” Aberrātiō is a derivative of the verb aberrāre “to divert, forget for a time; to wander off, go astray, deviate.” Aberration entered English in the 16th century.

how is aberration used?

They don’t want to believe that the United States is opposed to action on global warming. They’d rather see the Trump administration as an aberration.

Lisa Friedman and Brad Plumer, "Introducing Our Newsletter, Climate Fwd:" New York Times, November 15, 2017

I had never fought or thrown a punch at anyone. It was an aberration to my father, and he had instilled in me this idea of physical violence as an aberration.

David Adams Richards, Mercy Among the Children, 2000
quiz icon
WHAT'S YOUR WORD IQ?
Think you're a word wizard? Try our word quiz, and prove it!
TAKE THE QUIZ
arrows pointing up and down
SYNONYM OF THE DAY
Double your word knowledge with the Synonym of the Day!
SEE TODAY'S SYNONYM

Get A Vocabulary Boost In Your Inbox

Get the Word of the Day every day!
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Word of the day

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

ufology

[ yoo-fol-uh-jee ]

noun

the study of unidentified flying objects.

learn about the english language

What is the origin of ufology?

Ufology was first recorded in 1955-60.

how is ufology used?

The First International Congress on the U.F.O. Phenomenon, which ended here yesterday, brought the two groups uncomfortably together, and, after a week of heated debate, a single theory of ufology seemed further away tha[n] ever.

Alan Riding, "Scientists and Laymen in Conflict At World Conference on U.F.O.'s," New York Times, April 25, 1977

The history of ufology shows the complex psychology of fringe beliefs.

Julie Beck, "What UFOs Mean for Why People Don't Trust Science," The Atlantic, February 18, 2016

Word of the day

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

goldilocks

[ gohl-dee-loks ]

adjective

(usually initial capital letter) not being extreme or not varying drastically between extremes, especially between hot and cold: a Goldilocks economy that is neither overheated nor too cold to cause arecession; a goldilocks planet such as Earth.

learn about the english language

What is the origin of goldilocks?

Little new or unknown can be said about Goldilocks, but in the late 1980s astronomers began using the phrases Goldilocks planet or Goldilocks zone for planets in our solar system exoplanets that are not too hot, not too cold for supporting life (as we know it on earth).

how is goldilocks used?

For future generations to realize the search for distant “Goldilocks planets,” this generation must work harder to protect our own.

Alan S. Fintz, "Letter to the Editor: The Good Earth," New York Times, February 1, 2011

Short-story collections prove to be a solution to folks who are “too busy to read” or are trying to find a way to break up a monotonous commute becoming the “just right” in a Goldilocks situation.

Nicole Y. Chung, "9 short-story collections we can't wait to read this fall," Washington Post, September 18, 2017

Get A Vocabulary Boost In Your Inbox

Get the Word of the Day every day!
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.