Sunday, June 29, 2008

Astringency

Astringency is also the dry, puckering mouthfeel caused by tannins found in many fruits such as blackthorn, bird cherry and persimmon fruits. The tannins denature the salivary proteins, causing a rough "sandpapery" sensation in the mouth. Astringency tastes unpleasant to many mammals (including humans), which tend to avoid eating astringent fruit; conversely, birds do not taste astringency and readily eat these fruit. It is thought that fruit astringency gives a selective advantage to some plant varieties because birds are better than mammals at long-distance seed dispersal, often flying a great distance before passing the seeds in their droppings.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

velleity

1. Volition at its lowest level.
2. A mere wish or inclination.

Antiziganism

Antiziganism (pronounced /æntaɪˈzigənɪzm/) or Anti-Romanyism is hostility, prejudice or racism directed at the Roma people, commonly called Gypsies.

The root zigan is the basis of the word for the Roma people in many European languages. In most of those languages, the pronunciation is similar to the Hungarian cigány (pronounced [ˈtsiɡaːɲ]). The Roma — who have often been stereotyped as thieves, tramps, con men and fortune tellers — have been subject to various forms of discrimination throughout history.

Due in part to their semi-nomadic lifestyle and differences in language and culture, there has been a great deal of mutual distrust between the Roma and the more settled indigenous inhabitants of the areas to which the Roma migrated. This distrust has persisted even though Roma who migrated into Europe often converted to Christianity, and those who arrived in the Middle East became Muslims.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Spoliation

The act of despoiling or plundering.

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Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Sparth

An Anglo-Saxon battle-ax, or halberd.

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Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Zarpie

t's like cool, awsome, bombtasic, gnarly, and wicked at the same time.

Mopologist

An apologist for the Mormon Church

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Monday, June 23, 2008

Lode

In geology a lode is the metalliferous ore that fills a fissure in a rock or a vein of ore deposited between layers of rock.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Friday, June 13, 2008

Lionize

To look on or treat (a person) as a celebrity.

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Thursday, June 12, 2008

Picayune

something trivial

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Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Interregnum

An interregnum (plural interregna or interregnums) is a period of discontinuity of a government, organization, or social order. Archetypally, it was the period of time between the reign of one monarch and the next (coming from Latin inter-, "between" + rēgnum, "reign" [from rex, rēgis, "king"]), and the concepts of interregnum and regency therefore overlap. An interregnum can simplistically be thought of as a "gap", although the idea of an interregnum emphasizes the relationship to what comes before and to what comes after in a sequence. This contrasts with a near synonym like gap, which may be random, encompassing neither connotation of interjacency in a sequence nor formal interrelation.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Monday, June 9, 2008

Trasianka

Trasianka or trasyanka is a BelarusianRussian patois.

Somnolence

Somnolence (or "drowsiness") is a state of near-sleep, a strong desire for sleep, or sleeping for unusually long periods (c.f. hypersomnia). It has two distinct meanings, referring both to the usual state preceding falling asleep, and the chronic condition referring to being in that state independent of a circadian rhythm. The disorder characterized by the latter condition is most commonly associated with users of prescription hypnotics, such as mirtazapine or zolpidem.

It is considered a lesser impairment of consciousness than stupor or coma.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Primogeniture

Primogeniture is the common law right of the firstborn son to inherit the entire estate, to the exclusion of younger siblings.

Sunday, June 1, 2008