like a clump or tuft of wool.
Flocculent “like a clump or tuft of wool, fleecy” comes from the Latin noun floccus “tuft of wool” (of uncertain etymology) and the adjective suffix –lentus, naturalized in English as –lent. Flocculent is used in the physical sciences, such as physical chemistry, zoology, botany, and meteorology. Flocculent entered English about 1800.
A vast, flocculent cloud darkened and devitalized the city, mimicking the family mood like weather does in memories.
In flocculent spirals, fluffy patches of stars and dust show up here and there throughout their disks. Sometimes the tufts of stars are arranged in a generally spiraling form, as with NGC 3521, but illuminated star-filled regions can also appear as short or discontinuous spiral arms.
any barely drinkable liquid or beverage, as inferior soda, beer, coffee, or soup.
Belly-wash is an obvious slang term with several meanings: a barely drinkable liquid (such as soup) or beverage (alcoholic or nonalcoholic); it also means nonsense, rather like hogwash. Belly-wash, an Americanism, entered English in the second half of the 19th century.
Mr. Nevins, the head of Great Waters of France, which is running the campaign to make America fizz with Perrier, made the company’s objective even clearer … to capture part of the $10 billion a year Americans spend on what used to be called bellywash.
He drinks Bordeaux claret and hock. Bellywash, I call it, bellywash.
any controversy that attracts great public attention.
Cause célèbre is a French phrase still unnaturalized in English, meaning “famous (legal) case.” French cause comes from Latin causa “legal proceedings, trial”; célèbre comes from Latin celeber (inflectional stem celebr-) “crowded, busy, well-attended, famous.” Causes célèbres in the U.S. include the Scopes Trial, maybe more commonly known as the Monkey Trial (1925) about the teaching of evolution, and the O.J. Simpson Trial (1994–95). The term is also used more broadly to refer to any controversy that attracts great public attention. Cause célèbre entered English in the second half of the 18th century.
The case eventually became a global cause célèbre; Bob Dylan wrote a song about it, Denzel Washington starred in a movie about it.
Krajnc’s case became a cause celebre among animal protection activists, some of whom have established groups modeled on Toronto Pig Save, and attracted the support of celebrities including the singer Moby, who offered financial support.
Get A Vocabulary Boost In Your Inbox