Wednesday, May 27, 2009
Wondrous Words Wednesday (May 27)
Kathy at Bermudaonion’s Weblog hosts this weekly meme in which she asks us to share new words we’ve come across in our reading. Feel free to join in the fun.
All my words this week are from Crossed Wires by Rosy Thornton.
Parky – “. . . Nana had much more often had call to complain of its being parky, up there on the deck access” (p. 3).
Parky means “chilly.”*
Chipolata – “Which of course made her begin at once to worry herself, taking all the enjoyment out of her single Lincolnshire pork chipolata” (p. 38).
A chipolata is “a small thin sausage.”
Jalfrezi – “She would have called out but her tongue was fat and uncooperative with sleep, her throat as dry as if she had had those lagers with Murray and a jalfrezi as well, instead of her solitary mug of tea and two cold sausages on a saucer” (p. 44).
Jalfrezi isn’t in my dictionary or in Dictionary.com, but Wikipedia defines it as “a type of Indian curry in which marinated pieces of meat or vegetables are fried in oil and spices to produce a dry, thick sauce.”
Invidious – “But the lecture on fire safety which was forming itself upon his lips suddenly struck him as invidious” (p. 49).
Invidious is an adjective used to describe an action, conduct, attitude, etc. that is “likely to excite resentment or indignation against the person responsible, especially by real or seeming injustice.”
Gennel – “Where they left the pavements for a short way to cut up the gennel beside the newsagent’s and then past the swings on the triangle of untidy grass . . .” (p. 65).
No sign of this word in my dictionary, Dictionary.com or Wikipedia, but the Urban Dictionary provides this definition: a gennel “is a covered alleyway connecting two terrace houses.”
Giro – “‘No, she gets her giro, so she ought to be able to make do all right’” (p. 157).
Giro is “a system of credit transfer between banks, post offices, etc., or a cheque or payment by giro, especially used for unemployment benefit or social security payments.”
Cutting – “‘Sat in a cutting near Baldock for nearly an hour’” (p. 213).
In this context, a cutting refers to “an excavated channel through high ground for a railway or road.”
Excursus – “. . . once they were away, she settled back in the passenger seat happily enough, keeping him distracted, as he negotiated the multiple roundabouts of the ring road, with an excursus on how greatly the state of Sheffield’s public housing stock had suffered . . .” (p. 267).
An excursus is “a detailed discussion of a special point in a book, usually in an appendix, or a digression in a narrative.”
Viva – “‘The best thing is to try to forget all about it until we hear about a date for your viva’” (p. 307).
I think viva is short for viva voce, which is “an oral examination for an academic qualification.”
What new words have you discovered lately? Share your Wondrous Words on Kathy’s blog.
*Unless otherwise noted, all definitions are from the Canadian Oxford Dictionary (2004).