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Word of the Day
Monday, November 17, 2014

Definitions for rufescent

  1. somewhat reddish; tinged with red; rufous.

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Citations for rufescent
On leaving the nest the young Swallows, especially the birds of the first brood, lost this rufescent tint rather quickly and become bleached, the forehead turning to white with exposure, and the throat fading to a pale tawny buff or white. Richard Bowdler Sharpe, "Catalogue of the Passeriformes, or Perching Birds, in the Collection of the British Museum," Catalogue of the Birds in the British Museum: Volume X, 1885
Behind us, Tony and Lee cataloged the profusion of exotic birds--rufescent tiger-herons, harpy eagles and iridescent macaws. Patrick Woodhead, "Tumble in the Jungle," New York Times, May 21, 2006
Origin of rufescent
1810-1820
Rufescent was mostly used in zoological descriptions when it entered English in the early 1800s. Its Latin precursor rūfēscent was formed from the Latin term for "red" or "reddish," rūfus, the inchoative element -ēsc-.