May 13, 2009

wondrous words

Here's the new words I found in my reading during the week:

From Adventures of a Zoologist:

Noncom- "... we watched through the windows as noncoms fried steaks on a grill among the snowdrifts."
Definition: a subordinate officer appointed from enlisted personnel

Otolith- "Students at Evergreen State College, on Puget Sound, are finding out what seals eat by examining fish otoliths in seal scats recovered from the beach."
Definition: a calcerous particle found in the inner ear; in bony fishes it forms a hard shape distinctive to each species

From Dolphin Chronicles:

Purview- "Even in a boat it's difficult to track dolphins at sea for any length of time, and then we generally see only the surface of their lives- most of their activity takes place under water, beyond our purview."
Definition: range of vision, comprehension, or experience

Necropsy- "They were about to perform a necropsy on Arrow, Jane said, and would let us know the results."
Definition: what an autopsy is called when performed on animals

Sobriquet- "So what better sobriquet than Mikhal Baryshnikov's nickname?"
Definition: an affectionate or humorous nickname (one of the dolphins was named Misha)

Gelid- "A true athlete- triathlete, actually- with the smoothly muscled physique of a competitive swimmer, she swam regularly in the gelid waters of Monterey Bay."
Definition: very cold, icy

Umbrage- "After some initial umbrage at the appellation, we decided to claim the title as our own: we were the dolphinettes, and proud of it."
U: feeling of anger, taking offense
Appellation: a name or title (see above usage)

For more wondrous words, visit the host of this meme at Bermudaonion's Weblog.


bermudaonion said...

Great words! I knew noncom since my dad was in the Navy. They referred to them as NCOs (non-commissioned officer) too. Thanks for participating today.

Gentle Reader said...

Those are some great words! I love learning new vocabulary. I often play "Free Rice", which helps too :)

Jo-Jo said...

Great words...thanks for sharing them! My words are here.

Anonymous said...

Great words. I only knew a couple.

Phyl said...

"Gelid." What an absolutely lovely word. I'm sure I'd heard it before, but had no idea whatsoever of its meaning.

My lone word this week is at Bookishgal.

Nymeth said...

Those are all new to me except "gelid" - which I only knew because we have "gélido" in Portuguese.

Jenny said...

I remember learning "appellation" and "sobriquet" in my high school American lit class. We were studying James Fenimore Cooper - I hated the book but loved the words!

Jeane said...

I haven't been to Free Rice in a long time. Now I've got a hankering to play again!

An Anonymous Child said...

Such curious words as usual. The only one that I've ever encountered is necropsy but I really like the word "sobriquet". It's the type of complex word that can easily fit into day-to-day conversations.

Fyrefly said...

I don't know if the book got into it, but in a lot of species otoliths can be used to age the fish, since they grow in rings, like trees. (Hey, look at me getting to use knowledge from my Vertebrate Anatomy course!) :)