Words from The Illuminatus! Trilogy

The book cover of The Illuminatus! Trilogy I just finished the The Illuminatus! Trilogy. I toted this tome in my bag for two months, going across the country, coming back, and breaking to read other books. Even though I’ve been very committed to the novel, I’m not sad to see it’s end. I would recommend it, but only if you have a high tolerance for wacky sci-fi nonsense and knowing winks from the authors.

But, the reason we’re here (or clicking the back button) right now is to read a list of definitions of words that I picked out of the book. There were many more I didn’t know so well, but we’ll just stick to this short list for now.


umbrage

Definition:

a feeling of anger caused by being offended

Context (p20):

and at the same time he observed an increased blandness in Muldoon’s features indicating that he, too, had noted it and was prepared to take umbrage


erudite

Definition:

having or showing profound knowledge

I lost the context, but noted that it was “regarding knowledge”


stochastic

Definition:

being or having a random variable

Also lost context on this one, but it was regarding a “generated pattern”


asperity

Definition:

something hard to endure

Context (p26):

Regarding the president chastising the VP for saying “WOP”:

He spoke with some asperity, since he lived daily with the dread that someday the secret tapes he kept of all Oval Room transactions would be released to the public.


mendacious

Definition:

given to lying

I think of “mentir”, Spanish for “to lie”

Context (p?):

In this moment, now, as I tighten the trigger, the tyrant dies, and with him all the lies of a cruel, mendacious epoch.


pons asinorum

Definition:

latin for “bridge of asses”

See Pons Asinorum on Wikipedia for a way better explanation.

Context (p100):

(Didn’t record it)


satrap

Definition (from Princeton Wordnet):

a governor of a province in ancient Persia

A perhaps more apt definition for context below (from classics technology center):

a Persian title that literally means “protector of power”; satraps were essentially administrative governors, ruling a satrapy

Context (p345):

He was an old man, and he was tired of being their servant, or satrap, or satellite


rictus

Definition:

a gaping grimace

Context:

and he begins to grin a rictus not of omnipotence such as he had expected but of something different and unexpected and therefore better – omniscience


aphorism

Definition:

a short pithy instructive saying

Context (p386):

“You might say, ” Moon’s voice betraid pride in the aphorism he was about to unleash, “mankind is a stautory ape.”

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One Response to Words from The Illuminatus! Trilogy

  1. Soléna says:

    That’s interesting, some of these words are really like the corresponding French words. And in French they’re quite common words.

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