Friday, 31 August 2012

Entry: dewimpled (adj.)

In context: "Lyle, a dewimpled Carmelite who works the kitchen day-shift, occasionally Mario Incandenza, and many times Avril herself take up most of the psychic slack, for practical purposes, among E.T.A.s in the know.:

Definition: A neologism.  I've previously included wimples, and wimpled (adj.) is: Enveloped in or wearing a wimple; hence, veiled, occas. blindfolded.

So dewimpled must be the removal or absence of a wimple?


SNOOT score: 1
Page: 437

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Thursday, 30 August 2012

Entry: cyanitic (adj.)

In context: "...drank a big class of Nestlé's Quik laced with the sodium cyanide his Dad kept around for ink for drafting, drinks cyanitic Quik in his family's home's redecorated kitchen..."

Definition: I can't find this inflection anywhere, but presumably from cyanide (n.): A simple compound of cyanogen with a metal or an organic radical, as potassium cyanide (KCy), an extremely poisonous crystalline solid.

Other: I was wondering what cyanide tastes like, since I've heard almonds in the past.  I found this interesting story/myth on straightdope:

I heard in school from my teacher that no one knows what hydrogen cyanide tastes like, it's so poisonous. She said one scientist, being already on deathbed, proceeded to taste it, pen and paper in hand. But once he tasted the stuff, he died before he could write more than "S". Sweet? Salty? Sour? 

(From user Busy Scissors)

SNOOT score: 1
Page: 436

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Entry: votaried (adj.)

In context: "...he's invited to go chill for a bit in the Clipperton Suite, to maybe meditate on some of the other ways to succeed besides votaried self-transcendence and gut-sucking-in and hard daily slogging toward a distant goal you can maybe, if you get there, live with."

Definition: This inflection isn't in the dictionaries I checked, but you can figure it out from votary (n.) and votary (adj.);

(n.): One who is bound by vows to a religious life; a monk or nun.

(adj.):  Of persons: Consecrated by a vow; devoted to a religious life.
 Of mode of life: Subject to vows. 


SNOOT score: 1
Page: 434

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Entry: ectoplasm (n.)

In context: "...Enfield's Finest had come and peered around and drawn a chalk ectoplasm around Clipperton's sprawled form..."

Definition: The OED isn't so helpful here:

1. (See quot.)

1883   J. E. Ady in Knowl. 15 June 355/2   Its [Amœba's] jelly-like body becomes faintly parcelled out into an outer firm (ectoplasm) and an inner soft (endoplasm) layer.

The etymology does help, though:

Etymology:  Greek πλάσμα something moulded or formed.

And a more common usage of the term, I think, is:

2. A viscous substance which is supposed to emanate from the body of a spiritualistic medium, and to develop into a human form or face.


SNOOT score: 1
Page: 433

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Monday, 27 August 2012

Entry: delotusing (n.)

In context: "...Lateral Alice Moore was beeped and asked to with due speed to get Lyle up from the weight room/sauna and over to East House ASAP, and that at some point while Lyle was delotusing from the dispenser and making his way..."

Definition: Neologism.

From the lotus position: a cross-legged sitting posture originating in meditative practices of ancient India, in which the feet are placed on the opposing thighs.


SNOOT score: 1
Page: 432

Source: Wikipedia   

Sunday, 26 August 2012

Entry: codicil (n.)

In context: "...Mario Incandenza sways down the steep path to the portcullis in the warm rain and interfaces with Clipperton through the bars and has the attendant hold the intercom-button down for him and personally requests that Clipperton be admitted under a special nonplay codicil to the regulations..."

Definition: Law. A supplement to a will, added by the testator for the purpose of explanation, alteration, or revocation of the original contents.

And more generally:

Supplement, appendix.


SNOOT score: 2
Page: 432

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Entry: vig (n.)

In context: "...little Michael Pemulis of Allston takes his PowerBook and odds-software and makes a killing on vig in the frenzy of locker-room wagering..."

Definition: Slang for vigorish (n.):

The percentage deducted by the organizers of a game from the winnings of a gambler. Also, the rate of interest upon a usurious loan.

Other: I was wondering where the term came from.  Here it is:

Etymology:  Probably < Yiddish, < Russian vȳigrȳsh gain, winnings.

SNOOT score: 1
Page: 431

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Friday, 24 August 2012

Entry: cuirass (n.)

In context: "...some of them wonder whether maybe now Eric Clipperton will put down his psychic cuirass and take his unarmed competitive chances with the rest of them..."

DefinitionA piece of armour for the body (originally of leather); spec. a piece reaching down to the waist, and consisting of a breast-plate and a back-plate, buckled or otherwise fastened together; still worn by some European regiments of cavalry.

Other: Here's a picture.  There are several images on the Wikipedia page.

SNOOT score: 1
Page: 431

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Entry: gendarmes (n.)

In context: "'You believe we are underestimating to see all you as selfish, decadent.  But the question has been raised: are we cells of Canada alone in this view?  Aren't you afraid, you of your government and gendarmes?'"

Definition: A policeman. slang.

 (Chiefly pl.) In the older French army, a horseman in full armour, having several others under his command; in later times, a mounted trooper, esp. of the royal companies. Obs. exc. Hist.

Other: If you have basic French this is an easy one: 

Etymology:  < French gendarme, a singular formed from the plural gens d'armes men of arms; hence a fresh plural gendarmes. Some confusion between these forms is evident in English writers; in modern French the spelling gens d'armes is restricted to the historic sense

SNOOT score: 1
Page: 430

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Entry: numinous (adj.)

In context: "'...the game's finest players frequently close their eyes entirely as they wait, trusting the railroad ties' vibrations and the whistle's pitch, as well as intuition, and fate, and whatever numinous influences lie beyond fate.'"

Definition: Of or relating to a numen; revealing or indicating the presence of a divinity; divine, spiritual.

In extended use: giving rise to a sense of the spiritually transcendent; (esp. of things in art or the natural world) evoking a heightened sense of the mystical or sublime; awe-inspiring.


SNOOT score: 2
Page: 1060

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Entry: athwart (adj.)

In context: "'...the player may hurl himself athwart the expanse of track...'"

Definition: Across from side to side, transversely; usually, but not necessarily, in an oblique direction.

Also, in nautical terms: From side to side of a ship.

Other: I've been wondering at the names for different parts of a canoe

SNOOT score: 2
Page: 1059

Source: Oxford English Dictionary, 

Monday, 20 August 2012

Entry: episcopate (n.)

In context: "The night's heavily travelled crossing's schedule of trains is known to Le Jeu du Prochain Train's episcopate of les directeurs de jeu..."

Definition:  The office or dignity of a bishop.

Also:  The bishops regarded as a collective body.


SNOOT score: 1
Page: 1059

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Entry: stelliformism (n.)

In context: "This scholarly essays concurs in many essential respects with the thesis that Canadian and other non American Root Cults, in contrast to all but what Phelps and Phelps argue are isolated packets of antihistorical American stelliformism, persist so queerly in directing their reverent fealty toward principles..."

Definition: A Wallace neologism.  From stelliform (adj.):   Shaped like a star; existing in the form of star-shaped crystals.


SNOOT score: 1
Page: 1058

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Saturday, 18 August 2012

Entry: dasein (n.)

In context: "'Les Assassins des Fauteuils Rollents of Quebec are essentially cultists, locating both there political raison d'etre and their philosophical dasein within the North American sociohistorical interval of intensive special interest diffraction that preceded - nay, one might daresay stood in integral causal relation with respect to - the nearly simultaneous inaugurations of O.N.A.N.ite governance, continental Interdependence, and the commercial subsidization of a lunar O.N.A.N. calendar.

Definition: I've been looking forward to this one.

In Hegelian philosophy: existence, determinate being.

Other: I've only read a few of Hegel and Heidegger's work, so I'm not going to be able to do this anything like justice.  If you're interested in the area and would like to contribute, I'd be happy to add your thoughts.

Here, though, are a few interesting things:

From the etymology:  German, < da there + sein being, a favourite word of Goethe's.

Here is something from Wikipedia: a German word which literally means being there (German: da - there; sein - being) often translated in English with the word existence. It is a fundamental concept in the existential philosophy of Martin Heidegger particularly in his magnum opus Being and Time. Heidegger uses the expression dasein to refer to the experience of being that is peculiar to human beings. Thus it is a form of being that is aware of and must confront such issues as personhood, mortality and the dilemma or paradox of living in relationship with other humans while being ultimately alone with oneself.

SNOOT score: 4
Page: 1057

Source: Oxford English Dictionary, Wikipedia  

Friday, 17 August 2012

Entry: vishnu (n.)

In context: "...the ultra right anti-Reconfigurative vishnu of the Bloc Quebecois..."

Definition: One of the principal Hindu deities, holding the second place in the great triad, but by his worshippers identified with the supreme deity and regarded as the preserver of the world.

Other: There is a lot of great stuff in Wikipedia entry.

SNOOT score: 1
Page: 1057

Source: Oxford English Dictionary, Wikipedia 

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Entry: escutcheon (n.)

In context: "...a double sinuous S shaped line across the tradition fleur-de-lis motif of Quebecois Separatism is the A.F.R. cell's standard, its escutcheon or "symbole" if you will..."

Definition: Well, guess you don't really need me here.

The shield or shield-shaped surface on which a coat of arms is depicted; also in wider sense, the shield with the armorial bearings; a sculptured or painted representation of this.


SNOOT score: 1
Page: 1056

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Entry: aegis (n.)

In context: "...-aegis in the newly subsidized Year of the Whopper-..."

Definition: Originally: a protection or impregnable defence. Subsequently: the backing or support of a person or thing


Classical Mythol. A shield, piece of defensive armour, or garment carried or worn by Zeus (Jupiter) or Athene (Minerva); (also) a carved or painted representation of this.

Other: Not the most useful in context above, apologies, but the full sentence this comes from is...intimidating.

SNOOT score: 1
Page: 1056

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Entry: fetishy (adj.)

In context: "...Poutrincourt has a fetishy thing about transitions."

Definition: A neologism, but I included it because I was curious about the word fetish (n.).  Here are a few interesting excerpts from the OED:

(Note how you can see an interesting line of development here)

Originally: any of the objects used by the indigenous peoples of the Guinea coast and the neighbouring regions as amulets or means of enchantment, or regarded by them with superstitious dread.

By writers on anthropology (following C. de Brosses, Le Culte des Dieux Fétiches, 1760) used in wider sense: an inanimate object worshipped by preliterate peoples on account of its supposed inherent magical powers, or as being animated by a spirit.

Something irrationally reverenced.

An object, a non-sexual part of the body, or a particular action which abnormally serves as the stimulus to, or the end in itself of, sexual desire.

Other: An etymology worth reading as well:

Etymology:  < French fétiche, < Portuguese feitiço n. charm, sorcery (from which the earliest English forms are directly adopted) = Spanish hechizo in same sense; a subst. use of feitiço adj. ‘made by art, artificial, skilfully contrived’ = Spanish hechizo , Italian fattizio , Old French faitis (see featous adj.) < Latin factīcius factitious adj

SNOOT score: 1
Page: 1056

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Monday, 13 August 2012

Entry: prenominate (adj.)

In context: "'...that the prenominate oversized infants reputedly do exist, are anomalous, and huge, grow but do not develop, feed on the abundance of annularly available edibles the overgrowth periods in the region represent, do deposit titanically outsized scat, and presumably do crawl thunderously about..."

Definition: Aforementioned.

Other: DFW gets a mention in the usages: 

1994   D. F. Wallace Getting Away in Supposedly Fun Thing (1997) 109   Except of course one problem with the prenominate theory is that there's more than one US, hence more than one State Fair.

SNOOT score: 2
Page: 1056

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Entry: woebegone (adj.)

In context: "...a woebegone little marginal archaic desktop-pub.-looking thing..."

Definition‘Beset with woe’; oppressed with misfortune, distress, sorrow, or grief. Obs. or arch.


Etymology:  The construction out of which this word arose is illustrated by the quots. immediately following, in which an objective pronoun is governed by a complex verb phrase containing bego v. (q.v. sense 8) with woe n. as subject (me is wo bigon = woe has beset me) <

c1330   Amis & Amil. 2150   Me nas neuer so woe bigon, Yif thou it wost vnderstond! For..almost ichaue him slon.

c1405  (1395)    Chaucer Franklin's Tale (Hengwrt) (2003) l. 608   Noght wolde I telle yow how me is wo bigon But certes outher moste I dye or pleyne.

Subsequently a change of construction took place, parallel to the passing of me is woe into I am woe (see woe adj.), woe and begone becoming consequently so indivisibly associated as to form a compound.

In the following quot. there seems to be a blend of the old and new constructions:

1593   T. Watson Tears of Fancie xxxviii,   My hart doth whisper I am woe begone me.

SNOOT score: 1
Page: 1055

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Saturday, 11 August 2012

Entry: winelight (adj.)

In context: "He was missing this time in U.S.A. Boston MA of refilling the pond for the ducks' return, the willows greening, the winelight of a northern sunset curving gently in to land without explosion."

Definition: A neologism, similar in direction to onionlight.  Light suggesting the colour of wine, or perhaps the colour of light filtered through wine.  Even without reading the above context, winelight suggests red/dark far more than white/pale.


SNOOT score: 4 (I'm hesitant to score neologisms higher than a 1, but I really love this one.)
Page: 427

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Friday, 10 August 2012

Entry: sacrosanct (adj.)

In context: "The United States: a community of sacred individuals which revers the sacredness of the individual choice.  The individual's right to pursue his own vision of the best ratio of pleasure to pain: utterly sacrosanct.  Defended with teeth and bared claws all through our history."

Definition: Of persons and things, esp. obligations, laws, etc.: Secured by a religious sanction from violation, infringement, or encroachment; inviolable, sacred.

Other: Not so uncommon, but a great word.  Wonderful etymology too:

Latin sacrōsanctus, properly two words, sacrō ablative of sacrum sacred rite (neuter of sacer sacred) and sanctus past participle of sancīre to render holy or inviolable. Compare French sacrosaint, earlier -sainct (whence some 17th cent. English forms), Spanish sacrosanto, Portuguese sacrossanto, Italian sacro-, sagrosanto.

I also like, for whatever reason(s), the following usage:

1880   World 16 June,   When the persons of hares and rabbits have ceased to be sacrosanct, what guarantee of inviolability is there for the grouse?

SNOOT score: 3
Page: 424

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Thursday, 9 August 2012

Entry: rôle (n.)

In context: "...Steeply welcomed the subsumption of his dignity and self in the very rôle that offended his dignity of self..."

Definition: I'm going to leave this as role (n.) until someone suggests something better: A person's allotted share, part, or duty in life and society; the character, place, or status assigned to or assumed by a person. Also in figurative contexts, with allusion to sense

Other: From what I read, rôle is just an alternate spelling to role, but I can't help but feel that it has different connotations.  Feel free to help out!

SNOOT score: 1
Page: 420

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Entry: tentacularly (adj.)

In context: "...tentacularly controlled by an InterLace that had patented the digital-transmission process for moving images..."

Definition: Neologism, but from tentacle (n.)/ tentacular (adj.):

Of, pertaining to, or of the nature of a tentacle or tentacles.

Other: The lion's mane jellyfish has some of the longest tentacles in the world today, with a record 120ft!

SNOOT score: 1
Page: 417

Source: Oxford English Dictionary, Wikipedia   

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Entry: mogulette (n.)

In context: "Because enter one Noreen Lace-Forché, the USC-educated video-rental mogulette who in the B.S. '90s had taken Phoenix's Intermission Video chain from the middle of the Sun Belt pack to a national distribution second only to Blockbuster Entertainment in gross receipts."

Definition: From mogul (n.):

An important, influential, or dominant person; an autocrat. Now chiefly (usu. with distinguishing word): a business or (esp. in recent use) media magnate.

Other: But earlier from:

Each of the successive heads of the Muslim dynasty founded by Zahīr-ud-Dīn Muḥammad Bābur (1483–1530), which ruled an empire covering a large part of South Asia from the 16th to the 19th centuries. Frequently styled the Great (also Grand) Mogul . Now hist


The form Mughal is now often preferred in this sense.

SNOOT score: 1
Page: 415

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

Monday, 6 August 2012

Entry: avuncular (adj.)

In context: "...the otherwise handsome pedestrian who accepts a gorgeous meter maid's coquettish invitation to have a bit of a lick of the ice cream cone she's just bought from an avuncular sidewalk vendor."

Definitiona. Of, belonging to, or resembling, an uncle.

but also

b. (humorously) Of a pawnbroker: see uncle n.   Also absol.

Other: I'll admit I didn't have an exact handle on this one until I looked it up.

Sometimes Latin seems so useful: Etymology:  < Latin avuncul-us maternal uncle, diminutive of avus grandfather + -ar suffix.

SNOOT score: 2
Page: 414

Source: Oxford English Dictionary