Word of the Day

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

slubber

[ sluhb-er ]

verb (used with object)

to perform hastily or carelessly.

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What is the origin of slubber?

Slubber  is an older, infrequent verb that means “to perform (something) hastily or carelessly.” Earlier senses include “to smear; smudge” and “to sully (a reputation, etc.).” Slubber comes from Low German slubbern “to do work carelessly” and appears to be related to slabber and the more familiar slobber “to let saliva run from the mouth,” with an earlier sense of “to eat in a hasty, messy manner”—an unfastidious trio of terms forming one “sloppy” family. Slubber entered English in the early 1500s.

how is slubber used?

Slubber not business for my sake, Bassanio …

William Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice, 1600

It must be “slubber’d o’er in haste,”—its important preliminaries left to the cold imagination of the reader—its fine spirit perhaps evaporating for want to being embodied in words.

Caroline Kirkland, Western Clearings, 1845
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Monday, September 09, 2019

ikebana

[ ik-uh-bah-nuh; Japanese ee-ke-bah-nah ]

noun

the Japanese art of arranging flowers.

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What is the origin of ikebana?

Ikebana, the Japanese art of flower arranging, comes from the Japanese verb ikeru “to keep alive, make alive, arrange” and –bana, a variant used as a combining form of hana “flower.” Ikebana dates to the 6th century when offerings of flowers were placed at altars; later, flowers were also displayed in tokonomas (alcoves in private homes). Ikebana entered English at the beginning of the 20th century.

how is ikebana used?

… were you to consider the philosophy at the core of ikebana, grounded as it is in Japan’s ancient polytheism and its Buddhist traditions, you might find something quite relevant to the times we live in: an art that can expand your appreciation  of beauty.

Deborah Needleman, "The Rise of Modern Ikebana," New York Times, November 6, 2017

One must surpass and transcend concepts of traditional use and discover a “new face” in the material, and this “new face” is the primary focus of contemporary ikebana.

Shozo Sato, Ikebana: The Art of Arranging Flowers, 2012
Sunday, September 08, 2019

embosom

[ em-booz-uhm, -boo-zuhm ]

verb (used with object)

to cherish; foster.

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What is the origin of embosom?

The verb embosom “to cherish, foster,” is a compound formed from the prefix em– meaning “to make (someone or something) be in (a place or condition),” a borrowing from Old French, from Latin in-, and the noun bosom (the variant imbosom is formed directly from the Latin prefix in-). Bosom comes from Old English bósm and has certain relatives only within Germanic, e.g., Old Frisian bósm, Old Saxon bósom, Old High German buosam, German Busen. The verb is poetic and rare, first appearing in Edmund Spenser’s Faerie Queene (1590).

how is embosom used?

The more thoroughly she is recognized in any University, and made to embosom the minds trained in it, interpenetrating with her Divine force all resources of Science, the more will she make that, in no common-place sense but truly, royally, the cherished mother of its students.

, "The True Success of Human Life," The New Englander, No. 41, February 1853

When the act of reflection takes place in the mind, when we look at ourselves in the light of thought, we discover that our life is embosomed in beauty.

Ralph Waldo Emerson, "Spiritual Laws," Essays, 1841

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