I’m subscribed to the Wordsmith Word-a-day mailing list. I like a bunch of them, but rarely use them. I’m keeping ones I like here as a reference for myself.
This past weeks words were all religious. I liked one particular:
eremite (AIR-uh-myt) noun
A recluse, especially for religious reasons.
[From Latin eremita, from Greek eremia (desert), from eremos (solitary).]
I hadn’t known that the word “hermit” was based off of a different word.
Before that, the subject was fear and desire. I often I have this desire.
onomatomania (on-uh-mat-uh-MAY-nee-uh) noun
An obsession with particular words or names and desire to recall or repeat
[Via Latin, from Greek onoma (name) + -mania (excessive enthusiasm or craze).]
I like this from reading Baudrillard’s Simulacra and Simulation. I don’t know if I understood a word of it, but it left an impression.
simulacrum (sim-yuh-LAY-krum) noun
1. An image or representation.
2. A vague resemblance to something.
[From Latin simulare (to simulate), from similis (like). Ultimately from
the Indo-European root sem- (one) that is also the source of simultaneous,
assemble, simple, Sanskrit sandhi (union), Russian samovar (a metal urn,
literally, self-boiler), and Greek hamadryad (a wood nymph, who lives in
a tree and dies when it dies).]
Something I fear being.
nihilarian (nih-i-LAR-ee-uhn) noun
One who does useless work.
[From Latin nihil (nothing).]
“You may find yourself worrying that you’re turning into a nihilarian.”
Sian Prior; Ineffable; The Age (Melbourne, Australia); Dec 16, 2002.
A word using roots of a word I’m familiar with
cacography (kuh-KOG-ruh-fee) noun
1. Bad handwriting.
2. Incorrect spelling.
[From caco- (bad), from Greek kakos (bad) + -graphy (writing). Caco is
ultimately from the Indo-European root kakka-/kaka- (to defecate) which
also gave us poppycock, cacophony, and cucking stool
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cucking_stool . Opposites of today’s word are
calligraphy (beautiful handwriting) and orthography (correct spelling).
A related word is cacology http://wordsmith.org/words/cacology.html ]
dibs (dibz) noun
The right or claim on something.
[From shortening of dibstones, a children’s game played with pebbles.]