Word of the Day

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

sippet

[ sip-it ]

noun

a small piece of bread or the like for dipping in liquid food, as in gravy or milk; a small sop.

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What is the origin of sippet?

The very uncommon noun sippet is a diminutive of sop “a piece of solid food, as bread, for dipping in liquid food” and the diminutive suffix -et, influenced by sip. Sippet entered English in the 16th century.

how is sippet used?

With dinner almost over, the broken meats of the second course not yet removed, Anne pulls a silver dish towards her, and helps herself to a sippet. It is her favourite way to end a meal …

Joanne Limburg, A Want of Kindness, 2015

… my sister Theodosia made her appearance … kissed our father, and sat down at his side, and took a sippet of toast … and dipped it in his negus.

William Makepeace Thackeray, The Virginians, 1859
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Monday, November 19, 2018

gallinaceous

[ gal-uh-ney-shuhs ]

adjective

belonging or pertaining to the order Galliformes, comprising medium-sized, mainly ground-feeding domestic or game birds, as the chicken, turkey, grouse, pheasant, and partridge.

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What is the origin of gallinaceous?

The adjective gallinaceous comes straight from the Latin adjective gallīnāceus, a derivative of gallīna “hen,” itself a derivative of the noun gallus “rooster, cock.” Further etymology is uncertain: gallus may come from the Proto-Indo-European root gal- “to call, cry.” If so, gallus (from unattested galsos) means “shouter, crier” and is related to Lithuanian galsas “echo,” Polish głos “voice,” and English call (via Old Norse kall). Gallinaceous entered English in the 18th century.

how is gallinaceous used?

Yea, verily, there is much to inspire gratitude on this holiday centered on a gallinaceous bird with alarmingly hypertrophied breasts.

Glen Martin, “The Science of Holiday Happiness: Why Gratitude Really is Good for You,” California Magazine, November 24, 2014

In the sand I saw tracks of a large, gallinaceous bird — a sage grouse or chukar.

Denise Firestone, "Haven for Antelope and Hikers," New York Times, August 7, 1994
Sunday, November 18, 2018

shunpike

[ shuhn-pahyk ]

noun

a side road taken instead of a turnpike or expressway to avoid tolls or to travel at a leisurely pace.

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What is the origin of shunpike?

Shunpike is a blend of the verb shun and the noun (turn)pike. The word was originally an Americanism and dates from the mid-19th century.

how is shunpike used?

… she proposed to Mr. Morris that he should take the shunpike for a change.

Frank R. Stockton, The Captain's Toll-Gate, 1903

Shunpiking is real,” he said, using an old term for avoiding toll roads.

Phil Patton, "The Virtues of Avoiding Interstates," New York Times, August 5, 2007

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