Telofy commented on the word paleo-ethnologist
This is what happens if one asks me to name a random occupation.
October 4, 2014
Telofy commented on the list lost-for-word
Self-righteous ennui is obviously proper metaphysical ennui as opposed to mere plebeian “boredom.” (Well, not one word unfortunately.)
May 11, 2014
Awesome, thanks! I can just describe it as the inverse of that, “(to damn with faint praise)⁻¹,” or maybe “to praise with faint protest.”It’s also related to the backhanded compliment I think.
I just realized that another thing I do that I can’t find a name for seems like the inverse of the thing (far) below that I can’t find a name for. Basically, you either express criticism by praising a single, marginal aspect, or you express agreement by criticizing a single, marginal aspect. Maybe that’ll help in some way.
(And sorry for the gruesome example. It’s purely meant to illustrate; I do not condone any form of torture.)
“Did you read the new Dan Brown novel?”
“And? What do you think about it?”
“I liked the typeface.”
“She should find whoever did that to her, strip them naked, tie them to a chair, and at every full hour, slowly grind out a cigarette on their vulnerable skin until they repent.”
“She doesn’t smoke.”
May 10, 2014
Telofy commented on the list recaptcha-words
March 16, 2014
Yay, please word-dump ahead!
March 15, 2014
Telofy commented on the list double-dactyls
Word thievery is completely legal, and you’re invited to it. (Unless they’re trademarked I guess, but I don’t hold any trademarks that I’m aware of.)
Also please feel free to add your words to the list, or the ones that are double dactyls anyway. ;-)
January 28, 2014
Telofy commented on the word diesel
Engines that turn clockwise.
January 19, 2014
Telofy commented on the word news
Hehe, alexz is doing it right of course, but “a taphocoenose of news” is great! (Or taphocoenosis?) That’s what my “escargatoire of news” turns into when I’m asleep and only get to write them up eight hours later—except that snails don’t really have bones, so it’s more of “a chalk of news.”
“A business of news” is also very cute, especially since I work for a company called Ferret Go that does newsy things.
December 15, 2013
We’ve observed with some dismay that after periods of silence, news tends to come in… yeah, what exactly do we call these waves? Any suggestions for a collective noun for news?
“An observance of news” sound pretty neat. Sometimes it feels more like “a bloat of news,” “a mess of news,” or “a ostentation of news.” When we’re late reporting on some news items, they become “an escargatoire of news,” but they must’ve been “an ambush of news” or they could not have caught us unprepared like that. Some might also split of as “a murmuration of news” when we can’t cite our sources. Any other suggestions?
December 14, 2013
Telofy commented on the word albedo
Some five years after learning it here, I finally spotted it in the wild in Ender’s Game. :-D
October 14, 2013
I may be mistaken, but I think I knew at one point a word for the rhetorical figure where you facetiously disagree with a completely inconsequential aspect of an argument in order to signal that you do agree with its main point.
“They forgot the part where during her concert X throws up a little in her mouth when she notices Y in the audience.” “Unlikely. Stages are usually so brightly lit that you can hardly see the audience.”
I hope I’m not just imagining it, in which case we’d have to make one up.
Also hi again, everyone!
May 1, 2013
Telofy commented on the word awobble
“ ‘Eat! Eat!’ my mother would shout at our heads bent over bowls, the blood pudding awobble in the middle of the table.” —Maxine Hong Kingston, The Woman Warrior
April 20, 2013
Telofy commented on the list wordnik-notebooks
Haha, no I hadn’t. That’s wonderful!
I recently managed to find a good use for a form of eisegesis in a news post of mine, and I see it’s also on this list of mine. Perfect!
January 7, 2013
Hecko Ruzuzu! I don’t have one here to check; was alpenglow hidden behind a staple or on the fold? ^^
I’m fluffy! I’ve been doing a lot of pony things over the past year and a half. How about you?
Telofy commented on the word fesnyng
I’m working for a company called Ferret (or Ferret Go), so my colleagues and I are basically a fesnyng in a way.
October 26, 2012
Telofy commented on the list words-you-were-amazed-to-hear-in-a-song
Aww, thanks! I was reminded of it recently when I listened to Emilie Autumn again after a while. :-)
September 12, 2012
Telofy commented on the word choo choo train
This video is relevant.
March 20, 2012
Telofy commented on the list gene-wolfe
January 6, 2012
Telofy commented on the word Increate
Reminds me of Carl Sagan, and yet it’s by Gene Wolfe:
The brown book that I no longer carry with me, a book that has no doubt been destroyed with a thousand millions of others in what was the library of Master Ultan, had spun a tale of a great sanctuary, a place veiled by a diamond-sprinkled curtain lest men see the face of the Increate and die. After ages of Urth, a bold man forced his way into that temple, slew all its guardians, and tore down the curtain for the sake of the many diamonds sewn into it. The small chamber he found beyond the curtain was empty, or so the tale says; but when he walked out and into the night, he looked at the sky and was consumed by flames. How terrible it is that we know our stories only when we have lived them!
—Gene Wolfe, The Urth of the New Sun
August 1, 2011
Telofy commented on the user feedback
I can see the word pages again. Marvelous!
Thanks again, Wordnik!
July 5, 2011
Telofy commented on the user erinmckean
Thank you, Erin, and thank you, developers!
And—O glory!—I can also access the word pages again. :-D
I have this “‘Bored now.’ – Evil Words” list that I can’t access. Might that be the cause of my recent problems? (Here’s the broken link.)
July 4, 2011
I’m in a bit of a pickle here. Words are stacking up, and I can’t list them (or look them up without complications).
There is for example denward, who wants to join the Gene Wolfe list and fisticuff eager to to make it onto the 5-0 list. They are all fidgety with anticipation. I don’t want to stand in the way of their happiness.
July 2, 2011
I just noticed that I can not only not access the word pages, but when I try to add a word to one of my lists (/lists/add_word, where “add word” surely is an allusion to Gene Wolfe’s catachrest) it returns a 500 error as well.
June 29, 2011
A few more details: Whether Chromium 12.0.742.91 or Firefox 5.0 (on Ubuntu 11.04), as soon as I’m logged in, I can’t access the word pages anymore (HTTP status 500). Plz halp…
June 21, 2011
@rolig, I’m getting 500 errors too, as long as I’m logged in. I thought it was a temporary thing, but after a week or so, I now finally decided to check the feedback page.
Looks pretty though—in Chromium’s incognito mode. :-)
June 20, 2011
Telofy commented on the word loyalty
“Are you loyal?” he shouted.“To what, friend? I intend you no harm, if that’s what you mean.”“To the ship!”It seemed pointless to promise loyalty to what was no more than an artifact of the Hierodules, however large; but this was clearly no time to debate abstractions.
“To what, friend? I intend you no harm, if that’s what you mean.”
“To the ship!”
It seemed pointless to promise loyalty to what was no more than an artifact of the Hierodules, however large; but this was clearly no time to debate abstractions.
June 10, 2011
Telofy commented on the user ruzuzu
Glad I could help. :-)
April 18, 2011
Sehnsucht, in German, is a longing and yearning mostly for someone or somewhere, but possibly also for somewhen. Nostalgia, then, is a specific kind of Sehnsucht, I think. Here are a few bilingual examples.
Telofy commented on the word 01100010 01101001 01101110 01100001 01110010 01111001
python -c "print ''.join( chr(int(b, 2)) for b in '01100010 01101001 01101110 01100001 01110010 01111001'.split() )"
Telofy commented on the word ham
Email that is not spam; non-spam. (Source)
March 30, 2011
Telofy commented on the list things-weve-seen-moved-by-ants
For more inspiration, see Apache Ant.
March 28, 2011
Telofy commented on the word platybelodon
March 27, 2011
Telofy commented on the word uintather
“The Ascians used uintathers and platybelodons as beasts of burden. Mixed with them were machines with six legs, machines apparently built to serve that purpose. So far as I could see, the drivers made no distinction between these devices and the animals; if a beast lay down and could not be made to rise again, or a machine fell and did not right itself, its load was distributed among those nearest to hand, and it was abandoned. There appeared to be no effort to slaughter the beasts for their meat or to repair or take parts from the machines.”
—Gene Wolfe, The Citadel of the Autarch
Telofy commented on the word ransieur
“I saw thousands armed with the ransieur, so that at length I came to believe that all their infantry was equipped in that way; then, as night was falling, we overtook thousands more carrying demilunes.”
Telofy commented on the word uturuncu
“This old man was said to be an uturuncu, a shaman capable of assuming the form of a tiger.”
Telofy commented on the word osomy
March 21, 2011
Thanks—and I haven’t even added any Rovics words yet.
March 18, 2011
Telofy commented on the word cluck-off
A video from the 1999 National Cluck-Off.
March 15, 2011
Telofy commented on the word datanity
“Locking data is a crime against datanity” —Datalove
March 6, 2011
Telofy commented on the word paleosilicic
March 5, 2011
Are you aware that the pronunciation pages are currently inaccessible?
March 2, 2011
Chances are it has appeared on a reCAPTCHA at some point.
February 25, 2011
Telofy commented on the user john
February 20, 2011
I wanted to add anpiel to my Gene Wolfe list, but the AJAX request 500s and the definition page 404s (yes, those are verbed numbers). This problem is especially grave, because Anpiel is responsible for birds and, as we all no doubt know, the bird is the word.
Telofy commented on the word fennec
February 17, 2011
Rofl, do you practice nonlinear play reading—everyone reads their lines in the order that seems most natural to them—in your play reading group, ruzuzu?
February 14, 2011
I wouldn’t wish to confer judgment on such a profound and weighty issue as the fate of digital spirit, automatic, or ghost writing in the 21st century, but with what I can readily furnish all of you is the assurance that you haven’t been missing out on this list for long, as I have created it only minutes before ruzuzu posted her first comment here.
February 12, 2011
You seem to have one awesome life!
Telofy commented on the word money
An awkward contingency of history. (Inspired by CMOS 16, 14.98)
It’s the Englished version of the obscure German term Rautavistik. The German Wikipedia article roughly says: “Rautavistics is a form of performance art, whereby actions of no apparent meaning or purpose for the actor or third parties are elevated to an art form.” It may be akin to dadaism—not sure.
Telofy commented on the word snazzy
Trochee used it here. :-)
February 9, 2011
Telofy commented on the word emendate
I may have to up- or emendate this comment.
It’s not even a back-formation, is it?
February 4, 2011
Telofy commented on the word Democracy Now!
The Democracy Now! torrent feed is sometimes lagging behind a day or so. I just quickly hacked together a little script to download the torrent files directly—for example into your rTorrent watch directory. Have fun!
February 1, 2011
Telofy commented on the word cooccur
co-occur. Looks to me like it were some cute marsupial—or possibly one of those pidgeon-dog hybrids.
January 25, 2011
Telofy commented on the list 5-0
January 16, 2011
Telofy commented on the word passival
Language Log: A peeve for the ages
January 13, 2011
Telofy commented on the word integrious
Integrious: The Adjective of Integrity (The Integrious Project)
Telofy commented on the list stuff-vegans-consume-instead-of-critters
January 10, 2011
Telofy commented on the word acosmist
“Just as summer-killed meat draws flies, so the court draws spurious sages, philosophists, and acosmists who remain there as long as their purses and their wits will maintain them, in the hope (at first) of an appointment from the Autarch and (later) of obtaining a tutorial position in some exalted family. At sixteen or so, Thecla was attracted, as I think young women often are, to their lectures on theogony, thodicy, and the like, and I recall one particularly in which a phoebad put forward as an ultimate truth the ancient sophistry of the existence of three Adonai, that of the city (or of the people), that of the poets, and that of the philosophers.”
—Gene Wolfe, The Sword Of The Lictor
Telofy commented on the word odeum
“The rain, which had already grown fitful, did not truly cease; but for a very short time the light of the waning moon (high overhead and, though hardly more than half full, very bright) fell upon the giant's courtyard just as the light from one of the largest luminaries in the odeum in the oneiric level of the House Absolute used to fall upon the stage.”
—Gene Wolfe, The Sword of the Lictor
January 1, 2011
Telofy commented on the word verdescence
“The little island itself appeared unexceptional until one saw that it truly moved. It was low and very green, with a diminutive hut (built like our boat of reeds and thatched with the same material) at its highest point. A few willows grew upon it, and a long narrow boat, again built of reeds, was tied at the water's edge. When we were closer, I saw that the island was of reeds too, but of living ones. Their stems gave it its characteristic verdescence; their interlaced roots must have formed its raftlike base. Upon their massed, living tangle, soil had accumulated or been stored up by the inhabitants. The trees had sprouted there to trail their roots in the waters of the lake. A little patch of vegetables flourished.”
December 29, 2010
Telofy commented on the word pacho
“ ‘Not unless there are more to join them. They have only fish spears and pachos.’ Seeing my look of incomprehension she added, ‘Sticks with teeth—one of these men has one too.’ ”
Telofy commented on the word astara
“A league farther on, and a rabbit went skipping ahead of me in dread of the whirling astara I did not possess.”
Singular or plural? And what does it mean?
Telofy commented on the word with
Thanks. To me, it seems, it’s the more intuitive alternative anyway. :-)
December 3, 2010
Telofy commented on the word tangelocity
November 15, 2010
Telofy commented on the list one-word-book-titles
What about Guards! Guards! by Terry Pratchett? It’s one word, just reduplicated.
November 10, 2010
There is a discrepancy between the actual Wiktionary entries and their copies in your marvelous MongoDB: When the original article says, e.g., “Simple past tense and past participle of encroach.”, Wordnik gives the definition as “simple past tense and past participle of encroached.”.
November 7, 2010
That’s great news. Thanks.
October 29, 2010
Would it perhaps be possible to add a lemmatization option for the example sentences, so that, if I look up arctother, I also get the example sentence for arctothers? Thanks.
October 28, 2010
Telofy commented on the list hyphenated-halfs
Are semi- words welcome, too?
October 27, 2010
It seems verisimilar is unlistable.
October 20, 2010
Telofy commented on the word verbougeous
October 18, 2010
Telofy commented on the word planteration
“ ‘… I don’t suppose your fraternity has ever considered using food as a torment, instead of starvation?’
‘It is called planteration, Archon.’ ”
October 17, 2010
Telofy commented on the word imaginary number
“On every side the walls of stone ascended, so that to look at any one of them was to believe, for a moment at least, that gravity had been twisted until it stood at right angles to its proper self by some sorcerer’s multiplication with imaginary numbers, and the height I saw was properly the level surface of the world.”
Telofy commented on the word prestant
Yeah, wait, so if I leave the search field empty and hit enter, I’m directed to a random word, right? Or to a word that is related to the most recent secret word Wednesday word (diapason)?
Telofy commented on the user frogapplause
“Alles war ihm beseelt,” yeah, I remember that. I used to empathize with all kinds of inanimate things—caps of shampoo bottles, corks, scraps of metal, etc.—which made it close to impossible to throw anything away. Luckily, I’ve outgrown that.
October 16, 2010
Telofy commented on the word hetman
Careful, the plural is hetmans.
A use–mention confusion arises when one fails to respect a use–mention distinction.
My profile is now a lethal weapon against Borg semantically parsing Wordnik.
Alternatively you could construe it as a selective admonition of the use–mention confused only, from some kind of reductionistic view point; a self-ironic criticism of a sort of hierarchically nested reductionism from a holistic view point; a play with the human faculty to transcend a formal system (what Douglas Hofstadter in Gödel, Escher, Bach (p. 39) calls the “Intelligent mode” or “I-Mode” of thinking); or an animadversion on a use of the en dash that is not sanctioned by the Chicago Manual of Style (the 15th edition at least—I don’t yet have the 16th). I’m sure there are more eisegeses. (A word Gene Wolfe taught me, eisegesis. :-)
Modularization is terribly useful for the programmer, so I was (almost) tempted to promote it from its status as a mere means to the end of pragmatic programming to a structural ideal. Luckily, working with denormalized key-value stores (in which we decided to store data redundantly to increase performance) and an at best partly modular brain soon disabused me of this anachronistic bias.
In fact, I’ve only recently asked my CTO about a related issue. He immediately turned to examples of instances in which either modularization or integration was called for—clearly, both are equally useful tools to him.
Concluding, here an elucidating illustration from page 335 of Gödel, Escher, Bach, which, unfortunately, I couldn’t find on the Internet:
Thanks for noticing!
October 13, 2010
Telofy commented on the word spelaea
“Beasts—aelurodons, lumbering spelaeae, and slinking shapes to which I could put no name, all fainter than we who watched from the rooftop—moved among the dead.”
—Gene Wolfe, The Claw of the Conciliator
October 11, 2010
Telofy commented on the word lettrine
“Another excellent method of marking the start of the text, inherited from ancient scribal practice, is a large initial capital: a versal or lettrine.”
—Robert Bringhurst, The Elements of Typographic Style
Telofy commented on the word grandoise
“Servants from the House Absolute, it seemed, had brought timbers and nails, tools and paint and cloth in quantities much greater than we could possibly make use of. Their generosity had waked the doctor’s bent toward the grandiose (which never slumbered deeply) and he alternated between assisting Baldanders and me with the heavier constructions and making frantic additions to the manuscript of his play.”
October 8, 2010
Telofy commented on the word continue
“With a whispered wish, I threw it into the very center of the fountain. A jet caught it there and tossed it skyward, so that it flashed for a moment before it fell. I began to read the symbols the water made against the sun.
A sword. That seemed clear enough. I would continue a torturer.”
From time to time I wish I could list only one meaning of a word, without including all its other meanings and all its homographs and their various meanings.
In “When the shadow of the mainmast was no larger than a hat, the young man fleshed from dreams gave orders that the anchors be cast, and the fires banked …” (Gene Wolfe, The Claw of the Conciliator), bank has the one meaning “10. To cover (a fire), as with ashes or fresh fuel, to ensure continued low burning.” (AHD) and none other (that I’m aware of). I would like to be able not to squander this specificity when listing the word.
I have a few ideas how this may work from my user perspective, but none of them completely convinces me, so I’ll keep them to myself for now.
October 7, 2010
Telofy commented on the word trompe l’œil
See trompe l'oeil.
Telofy commented on the list the-request-line
Seconded. Thanks for the guidance with those country names, but especially, thanks for manteion. Throughout seven of Gene Wolfe’s tomes I couldn’t settle on one pronunciation, which made my sub-vocalization stumble every time I hit upon it—and every time was pretty often.
Do you know how American native speakers decide whether to say /ˈæntaɪ/ or /ˈænti/ for the prefix anti- in spontaneously formed compounds? (Similarly for semi-, multi, etc.)
September 30, 2010
Telofy commented on the word housewife
Cool, ruzuzu. As a special treat it contained quean. Oh, my spell checker doesn’t know it. ^^
September 22, 2010
Usually /ˈhʌzɪf/ for “a small container for needles, thread, and other sewing equipment.” (Sources: Heritage and Random House.)
Marvelous, now I can see many many pronunciations on the individual pages. Thanks!
Edit: And I have found that YourDictionary is happy to help out with Heritage usage notes, for as long as they are still in hiding here.
Telofy commented on the user chelster
Hecko. Until I read your latest blog post this morning, I thought the pronunciation that you counsel us on was the accent accepted and common among this class of “educated speakers”, which, you say, is much too broad. Since I don’t have a natural accent in English (I’m German), I try to carefully assemble one for myself that best reflects my social affiliations. My visceral preferences then either adapt or, in some cases, are good guides to cerebral choices already. With most words, for example, I prefer a low back merged pronunciation. The unmerged variants are no less euphonious, but often (without the /t/ ;-)) feel incongruous when I use them. (And I have no problem distinguishing /ɑ/ and /ɔ/, though /ɒ/ is a bit tricky still.) Conversely, I have a fondness for the occasional word-final pre-vocalic t-glottalization, and yet find that I rarely use it, probably because, while I’m in the right generation for it, I’m of the wrong gender. (The paper I linked to on t-glottalization says that “younger female speakers were most likely to use glottal stops”.)
Most recordings in online dictionaries purport to reflect General American pronunciation, an accent spoken in a smallish, rather northern region, and yet usually evince the whine–wine split (as you do with whinyard) that only 17% of Americans preserve any trace of (according to The Atlas of North American English), and that, moreover, is most frequent in regions along the south and east of the States. Luckily, I’m now aware of those statistics, but there are surely many more such intricacies that I’m completely ignorant of. I imagine a native speaker would have found it distinctly odd, if not pretentious, to hear someone in his twenties talk of a while loop in the voice of a hoary southerner. Hence, I’m very wary of the pronunciation samples in dictionaries, a worry that would be unnecessary if I knew of which region, social class, age group, gender, etc. they are representative. In the cases of the Heritage and the Random House dictionary I see no way of asking the orthoepists for such meta data, but from your blog posts it seems evident to me that you have very specific, well-trained, and deliberately chosen preferences in those regards, which you could surely explicate here, or in a future blog post.
Telofy commented on the word ellip
To ellip; see ellipsis. (From Roy Peter Clark’s The Glamour of Grammar.)
September 20, 2010
Telofy commented on the word disenthrall
Sir Ken Robinson: Bring on the learning revolution! (6:40)
September 15, 2010
When I’m on page 23 of a list and move a word to another list I’m returned to the first page. This is not as important as the usage notes, but I’d prefer to stay on page 23 as long as there are > 0 words, and otherwise be directed to page 22. Thanks!
September 12, 2010
Telofy commented on the word untergiversating
un-tergiversate-ing (sans the e of course)
See also this discussion in the comments section on Language Log.
September 11, 2010
The additions to the profile page are great, but the Heritage usage notes are still missing. My mental stack of usage problems to look up is threatening to overflow. Also, I can still only see (probably) 50 pronunciations on a wordnik’s pronunciations page. Thanks in advance.
September 6, 2010
Telofy commented on the user Telofy
Thank you both; you are very dear to me, too.
August 30, 2010
O, what warmth you let Wordnik radiate. Thank you!
Too kind, thank you. *blush*
Regarding the mean letter value this user pwns. Except, how are all the letters treated that are not part of our tiny alphabet? The rule might be generalized to the position in the Unicode table, making capital letters actually detrimental to one’s rank. An “ä” would be worth 228.
Hecko, T. Capitalization has no influence on the Wordnik hierarchy, for it is, as we both know, determined by the digit sum of our names, with A=1, B=2, …, Z=26.
As you also know, one has to uppercase every noun in German, a tedium the English language does not impose. Hence, my flouting of even her capitalization guidelines, though limited largely to proper nouns, seemed grossly unappreciative of me and violated my personal aesthetic preferences.
While a capital T may seem rather imposing in isolation or with inadequate kerning, it can, in context, contribute to a whole spectrum of expressions. None if its lowercase letters having extenders, “Teresa” almost necessarily looks more harmonious than “Telofy”, but in different types, with varying cap and ascender heights, my sobriquet’s typographic rendition can convey a variety of temperaments as well. Also in this regard, I think, it has gained from the uppercasing.
By the way, “frogapplause” has a digit sum of 137, “Telofy” only 83, so don’t fret. ;-)
Telofy commented on the word preposition stranding
What about adding an Anglo-Saxon/Old English dictionary to Wordnik?
Thanks for the rummaging, J.
August 29, 2010
Telofy commented on the word oxymoron
Me likes it.
Yes, the main stress in oxymoron is on the third syllable, however, she’s pretty. QED. (It’s called proof by pulchritude.)
In moroxy I would rather stress the second, perhaps the first syllable. Is it your coinage? If so, what is your decree?
August 28, 2010
At university, a fellow English student remarked that she preferred a more German-ish pronunciation with the main stress on the second syllable. I’d like to know what Chelster thinks about that. :-)
Is it possible that the invaluable Heritage usage notes are disappearing or have disappeared? I can’t find any anymore. There should be one on if and one on hopefully if I remember correctly.
August 26, 2010
Telofipodes seems to imply that “Telofy” is a clipping and Anglicization of Telofipus or something of the sort, and maybe it is, but you’re bringing up a woefully neglected broader issue. If, by some whim of evolution, I should one day undergo mitosis, it would be unbearable if the bland “Telofies” were the most daedal plural available to us. I’m just alarmingly unprepared for that contingency. Is there a canonical plural for ruzuzu?
August 25, 2010
Thanks a lot!
Actually, it’s been just recently that I’ve decided to switch to “Telofy” everywhere. The capital T used to scare me a little, it looks so tall and towering, but I’m getting used to it. Also, the “Te” is useful either as a benchmark for the kerning of a typeface or as a test whether kerning works in the browser at all (it always works in XeTeX of course).
I’ve just added the pronunciations that have been requested a few months ago…
Oh, cool, congrats! If it’s not too much trouble I’d like an uppercasing, too. There’s no hurry, though.
By the way, two pairs of brackets around words containing non-ASCII characters aren’t working on horrendous.
Update: I’m uppercase! Thanks a lot! (See also John’s profile.)
Is a pagination of the pronunciations pages in planning? I can only see a maximum of fifty words there. Thx.
Telofy commented on the word horrendous
I may be three years late—wouldn’t be the first time—but here is a list of some 160 words directly from the omniscient OED:
acanthocladous, amphipodous, annelidous, apodous, arachnidous, arthropodous, avidous, bifidous, biohazardous, blendous, blizzardous, brachiopodous, branchiopodous, centifidous, cephalopodous, cheiropodous, chilopodous, chondropodous, cœnopodous, cogitabundous, commodous, condylopodous, confidous, copepodous, cordous, cowardous, cupidous, cynipidous, cynopodous, decapodous, diplopodous, dipodous, discopodous, discordous, dolichopodous, enodous, fecundous, frondous, gasteropodous, goliardous, hazardous, hebecladous, heteropodous, hexapodous, hidous, hoplopodous, horrendous, hybridous, hyperhexapodous, hypo-iodous, hypiodous, incommodous, infandous, infecundous, infidous, intremendous, invalidous, iodous, isopodous, jeopardous, lagopodous, lapidous, laterigradous, legendous, lemuridous, ligniperdous, lividous, macropodous, mastigopodous, megalopodous, merdous, mesomyodous, micropodous, mirabundous, mirandous, molybdous, monochordous, monopodous, mucidous, multifidous, multimodous, multinodous, multipedous, myriapodous, myxopodous, nefandous, nematopodous, nereidous, neuropodous, niggardous, nitidous, nodous, octopodous, olidous, omnimodous, ornithopodous, ostracodous, ostracopodous, pachypodous, palladous, palmipedous, paludous, parallelepipedous, parricidous, pelecypodous, peristeropodous, peropodous, phyllocladous, phyllopodous, physogradous, plecolepidous, -podous, poecilopodous, polycladous, polylepidous, polypodous, pteropodous, pudendous, pudibundous, pygopodous, quadrupedous, repandous, retrogradous, rhizopodous, rhodous, ribaldous, rubicundous, ruvidous, sauropodous, scarabæidous, schizopodous, sciapodous, siphonopodous, solidipedous, solipedous, sordidous, splendidous, steganopodous, stomapodous, stomatopodous, stupendous, stupidous, surquidous, surquedous, syncladous, tardigradous, taxeopodous, tepidous, tetradecapodous, tetrapodous, theropodous, thoracipodous, timidous, trachelipodous, tremendous, trochalopodous, turbidous, turgidous, tylopodous, unhazardous, untremendous, validous, vanadous, velellidous, verdous, verecundous, vespidous, viverridous
August 24, 2010
Telofy commented on the user milosrdenstvi
If you want to use a Greek or Greekish plural without sounding pedantic, you can just momentarily halt amidwords and then give the “-podes” a slightly rising intonation. It’ll sound as if you weren’t sure about the English plural, but inferred it from your extensive knowledge of ancient languages, which is certainly no falsehood.
August 23, 2010
Hecko. There’s a typo or OCR error—“etfect”—on misericorde. Thx.
August 22, 2010
Natural language, it seems, has a penchant for rendering consistency and pedantry antithetical. In Sheldon’s defense I have to remark, however, that I cannot remember his actually maintaining the plural was anything else than an English plural.
By the way, I’ve just noticed that platypi is not etymologically “correct”. Luckily, I’ve never yet used the term. ^^
August 21, 2010
Lol, thanks! Evidently, it is already possible on Wordnik to look such things up in much more depth than in (regular) dictionaries by just asking the resident etymologists.
By hard c I assume you mean the /k/–/s/ distinction, or is there something Greek-specific I don’t know about? (Ancient Greek, apparently, differentiates between aspirated and unaspirated k.) The pronunciation Sheldon chose was /ˈkɒksɪˌdʒiz/, if I remember correctly, which is listed second after /kɒkˈsaɪdʒiz/ in Random House. Both could be interpreted as rendering the third c softly. Pronouncing the same sound twice in a row strikes me as rather atypical of English phonotactics, so should he rather have pronounced cc as one /k/ (had he been Greek and ancient)?
(Sorry, the “garlic and onions” allusion is lost on me. What are you referring to?)
August 19, 2010
The thesaurus is amazing! Thanks so much! It’ll save Thesaurus.com a lot of traffic. ;-)
Do you happen to be working on integrating word forms into the definition pages?
From Buffy, season 2, episode 9:
Willow: So Giles is sure that the vampire who stole his book is connected to the one you slayed last night? Or is it slew?Giles: Both are correct, and, yes, I’m sure.
Giles: Both are correct, and, yes, I’m sure.
From The Big Bang Theory, season 3, episode 14:
Raj: …, and I hope you both fall on your asses and break your coccyxes.Sheldon: The plural of coccyx is coccyges.
Sheldon: The plural of coccyx is coccyges.
I would like Wordnik to provide me with an overview of which dictionaries support those authoritative asseverations.
August 16, 2010
Telofy commented on the list bad-language
Strewth! A list without title.
August 14, 2010
Hecko. I could use a binary “complete” setting for lists that one can just tick in order to mark a list as complete, so that it no longer appears in—and thus clutters—the often quite long “add to a list” menu and is perhaps visibly finalized in some way. What do you think about that?
July 30, 2010
Telofy commented on the word whord
Like word, only stronger.
July 29, 2010
Telofy commented on the word illutible
“1623 COCKERAM, Illutible, that cannot be washed away. 1656 in BLOUNT Glossogr.” —OED
“Not clear enough to be read; unreadable; not legible or decipherable” according to Artwiculate.
July 27, 2010
Telofy commented on the word anacrisis
“interrogation accompanied by torture” —Worthless Word For The Day
July 25, 2010
Telofy commented on the word gowdalie
“spear used for fishing” —Webster’s Online Dictionary
Telofy commented on the list work-these-into-conversation
Neat list. :-)
I’m pretty sure I’ve used: apposite, zeugma (various kinds), aver, animadversion, evince, tendentious, concatenation, and bollix
probably also: autochthonous, supererogatory, ratiocination, and eristic (vs. Erisian)
and as words I’ve used (as in “That spiffy little glyph’s called a ‘pilcrow’.”): pilcrow and oneiric
Telofy commented on the word sphexish
“They can be as sphexish or as intentional as you please.”
—Richard Dawkins, Viruses of the Mind (p. 11)
July 24, 2010
Telofy commented on the word RAS syndrome
The “redundant acronym syndrome syndrome” (from I have RAS syndrome)
I can’t delete a word with a plus sign in it (U+1F4A9) on Trinkets. It would be neat if the “+” actually appeared, then I wouldn’t even be tempted to delete it.
July 22, 2010
Telofy commented on the word telodynamic
Oh, thanks for the floral link. (Here my reciprocation: ❀)
I’m trying to think of hypothetical situations in which it could be usefully applied. What about the (for me quite conceivable) one in which you have just sat down with a few friends around a table, taken out your laptop, and are absent-mindedly pulling an Ethernet cable over to you, telodynamically affecting a distant coffee cup?
July 21, 2010
Telofy commented on the word eventuate
What We Must Do In the Meantime: A Defense of Noam Chomsky (2:41 and 7:15)
Telofy commented on the word beat
Thanks. The effect is also used for tuning instruments. I guess the wheel of an accelerating car seemingly slowing down and then spinning backwards when observed through a video camera, is also a related phenomenon.
This, I think, is somewhat more complex, though.
With three (and more) different superimposed frequencies it quickly gets a lot more confusing. A possible reason why I could never make much sense of my biorhythm curves. ;-)
July 15, 2010
Yep. Great fun, especially when you gently, with one finger, caress the aluminum case of the external hard drive you trust with all your backups (while you are well grounded and the hard drive probably less so) and you feel it responding to you with an equally gentle purr.
(I can only guess, but it may be the beat of the 50 Hz AC and the vibration of the finger on the satin finish surface.)
Telofy commented on the word asseverate
Exactly. Now that I know asseverate I don’t have to use aver all that much anymore. :-)
July 13, 2010
Telofy commented on the word martello
“a circular, towerlike fort with guns on the top.”
July 10, 2010
When you read the beginning (or so) of The Urth of the New Sun, you can at least form theories how it may have found its way to 20th century Illinois, so Gene Wolfe could translate it. ;-)
Btw., for such cases when you can’t think of the right word or can’t recall it, we have this list.
July 7, 2010
I’ve read several very favorable reviews of that novel. Fascinating, how, with regard to memory, two opposite extremes can be used to very similar ends.
Is there a term for such elaborate subterfuges as (some) authors employ to increase the verisimilitude of their narrative by linking the world of their novel with the reader’s? (Explaining how TBotNS found its way back into our time, why it’s in English, why all direct speech is actually verbatim, etc.)
July 3, 2010
If I have to read long, plainly written non-fiction texts I sometimes try to read without the subvocalization, but often, not only with fiction, I feel like I’d be missing out on much of the sentence melody, so I can’t really muster the motivation to actually train speed reading techniques.
When you relearn a pronunciation for some obscure word, do you also go through such interesting phases as, for example, when your brain had tagged the spelling with “this other pronunciation is the correct one”, only, the correct pronunciation has already become the more familiar to you and thus changed places with the incorrect one, making the incorrect one “the other pronunciation” and you end up in complete discombobulation?
June 30, 2010
Telofy commented on the word double possessive
Constructions like “this extreme exactness of his” or “Any Friend of Nicholas Nickleby’s is a Friend of Mine”. (from Wikipedia)
See also: World Wide Words: Double Possessive
June 28, 2010
In the definitions of of, the usage note is duplicated and the duplicate seems to replace one of those marvelous “Our Living Language” sections (this one). Perhaps that has also happened on other pages. It’s great, however, to have the definitions all on the word page. Thanks.
Telofy commented on the word ambilevous
I just found this deviant definition:
“Having the ability to perform manual skill tasks with both hands.”
—The American Heritage Stedman’s Medical Dictionary
Unfortunately, I haven’t read any of the books you mentioned on my temporary Urth list, but another one I did read was There Are Doors. What I found especially intriguing in that novel is his subtle play with narrative perspective. Surprisingly, the story is told from a third-person perspective, but one soon notices that this is nothing but a clever disguise for a highly subjective narration. Even the writing style changes with the mental state of the protagonist. :-)
I have a propensity for subvocalization, so I often stumble on words whose pronunciation I don’t know or can’t settle on. For baluchither I can come up with one that seems natural enough, and the word is not too frequent throughout the books (one occurrence in Urth; eleven in Claw), but there are many words that renew my discombobulation each time I try to read them. In an interview with Gene Wolfe the interviewer kept pronouncing autarch /ˈɔtɑrtʃ/ instead of /ˈɔtɑrk/. Luckily, the word is comparatively well dictionaried, so I could learn that it wasn’t just me who had that problem.
Oh, and by the way, welcome to Wordnik!
Update: Ah, baluchithere is pronounced /bəˈlutʃəˌθɪər/, so without the extra e the pronunciation the word seemed to have whispered into my third ear, /bəˈlutʃəˌθər/, seems close enough.
June 27, 2010
Telofy commented on the list more-or-less-temporary-urth-list
A year may suffice for the first read. Though I would never do so publicly, I have to admit that I like his earlier works (Book and Urth of the New Sun and a few more) a tad better than his newer ones, but they all are marvelous.
Have you read Peace? It’s like a detective novel sans the detective, from the viewpoint of the dead but sympathetic perpetrator. You’ll need to stand in for the sleuth, but don’t worry, you have a vast mailing list archive as a sidekick. ;-)
June 25, 2010
Thanks, I hope my list will be of service to you, in some way. Of course, as a fan, I have to insist that none of his words are entirely invented, that all of them have some root one might be able to discern if one knows Greek, Latin, Spanish, and a few more languages.
When I read The Book of the New Sun for the first time a few years ago (thanks to Julia Ecklar’s song Terminus Est) I had—English being my second language—no way of secerning the two categories of, to me, unknown words you mentioned. I understood what was going on and, naturally, looked up lots of words (that was before I found Wordie, today’s Wordnik) but in rereading it now, yet more dimensions of the text unfold, as, for example, this (reader-teasing part of a) paragraph about Mater Gurloes:
He ate too much and too seldom, read when he thought no one knew of it, and visited certain of our clients, including one on the third level, to talk of things none of us eaves-dropping in the corridor outside could understand. His eyes were refulgent, brighter than any woman's. He mispronounced quite common words: urticate, salpinx, bordereau. I cannot well tell you how bad he looked when I returned to the Citadel recently, how bad he looks now.
Telofy commented on the word Linux Libertine
An absolutely marvelous typeface (including an apposite sans-serif face). Feel free to use it for Wordnik (via @font-face). :-)
June 14, 2010
Telofy commented on the word unpickle
I’m planning to use Pickle for my unit tests. I have to be careful though:
“Warning: The pickle module is not intended to be secure against erroneous or maliciously constructed data. Never unpickle data received from an untrusted or unauthenticated source.”
Hmm, I feel weird for pitying a function for a name at whose bathetic effect I’m unduly amused.
June 12, 2010
Telofy commented on the list cuddly-little-consonants
“p” most often is a voiceless bilabial plosive, but “q”, I’m afraid has no such clearly linked sound. In combination with “u” it’s usually pronounced as /kw/ (voiceless velar plosive and voiced labiovelar approximant (but it goes by a few more names)), while the voiceless alveolar plosive is a /t/. Since there are a few more or less common words with “q” not followed by “u” and among them surely many with the “q” being pronounced as /k/, you might be able to argue that not the “qu” cluster has the pronunciation /kw/ commonly associated with it, but that the “q” and the “u” are actually each associated with the respective phonemes. Due to the overwhelming frequency of “qu” words in comparison to “q^u” words, that seems a little counterintuitive to me, but I don’t know on what else one should base such arguments as there are so many so fuzzy and so limited rules to English pronunciation.
June 10, 2010
Telofy commented on the word solidus
According to The Elements of Typographic Style by Robert Bringhurst the solidus, as opposed to the virgule (slash), “slopes at close to 45° and kerns on both sides.”
See also Wikipedia: solidus
Telofy commented on the word Effloresce
June 7, 2010
Telofy commented on the word nycterent
June 6, 2010
Telofy commented on the word nycterine
nyc·ter·ine, adj. (nĭk'tə-rīn', -rēn', -tər-ĭn')
1. Occurring at night.
2. Dark; obscure.
Source: The American Heritage Stedman’s Medical Dictionary
Glad I could help.
June 3, 2010
I’m a bit unsure about the punctuation in German, hence the en dash. (In analogy with this time-honored em dash rule in English.)
Yep, then “Sie”.
In Pushing Daisies the translations were “Jetzt sehen Sie mich …” (or “Nun sehen Sie mich …”) and “… und jetzt nicht mehr.”
My favorite, I think, is “Jetzt sehen Sie mich – und jetzt nicht mehr.”
Is the reduplication of the “see me” in “Now you see me, now you don't see me.” idiomatic in English? I only know the phrase without the last two words. The difference in sound is about the same in German, I guess. And I sort of prefer the version with “mehr”.
Are you bringing something to an end? I read a poem about that only yesterday.
Sounds fine to me. The “Sie” vs. “du” distinction, of course, depends on the addressee. She isn’t by any chance a child or a friend of the speaker? (But I could imagine a magician addressing a stranger with “du” as well.)
But I’d like to first check with the German translation of a certain Pushing Daisies episode, for “Now you see me; now you don’t.” seems to me pretty much a set phrase in English and I don’t know if there is something equivalent in German.
Please stand by…
I am; where is it? :-D
Telofy commented on the word disprefer
Why I disprefer The Dictionary of Disagreeable English to pretty near anything
June 2, 2010
Telofy commented on the word Spode
“Last evening I attended a lovely cello recital in a private home in my neighborhood. Sitting in the parlor listening to Brahms on a 1768 Benjamin Banks, many of us deep in reverie (or snoozing—hard to tell), I was startled to see at the very moment of its toppling a teacup roll off its saucer from the lap of my abstracted neighbor Peggy. I tensed for the crash, but the cup hit the plush Oriental, somersaulted gently onto the wood floor, and miraculously righted itself without a sound. At a suitable moment, I retrieved it from under the settee and handed it back. Peggy inspected it for damage, caught her breath, and whispered ‘Spode!’ ”
—Dodging Editorial Bullets
Telofy commented on the list shiny-new-list
Now my alter-ego has to be careful not to delete this list by accident. He is experimenting with the new Lists API. :-D
May 27, 2010
Telofy commented on the word siege piece
“I climbed the stair of our tower then, past the storeroom to the gun room where the siege pieces lounged in cradles of pure force.”
—Gene Wolfe, The Shadow of the Torturer
Random House: siege piece
May 24, 2010
Telofy commented on the word swatch
“The pews were whole and gleamed with polish; the ancient stone altar was swatched in cloth of gold.” —Gene Wolfe, The Shadow of the Torturer
May 23, 2010
Telofy commented on the word fruition
“Some days passed before I could rid my thoughts of Thecla of certain impressions belonging to the false Thecla who had initiated me into the anacreontic diversions and fruitions of men and women.”
May 16, 2010
Telofy commented on the word khaibit
“Master Gurloes rolled his eyes and pulled at his jaw with one huge hand. ‘Well now, for decency’s sake they have these khaibits, what they call the shadow women, that are common girls that look like the chatelaines. I don’t know where they get them, but they’re supposed to stand in place of the others. Of course they’re not so tall.’ ”
—Gene Wolfe, The Book of the New Sun
May 14, 2010
Telofy commented on the list words-i-learned-from-firefly
该死! I’m two hours late.
May 10, 2010
Telofy commented on the word IRQed
“Annoyed by interruptions. Pronounced like and has a similar meaning to ‘irked’.”
—Global Nerdy – New Programming Jargon
Telofy commented on the word join, or die.
May 7, 2010
May I inquire about this comma again?
I’ve seen numerous instances of such “lists” of two words, joined by “and” or “or” that did not contain this comma even though the texts consistently used the Oxford comma in longer lists. Furthermore Wikipedia says: “The serial comma or series comma (also known as the Oxford comma or Harvard comma) is the comma used immediately before a grammatical conjunction (usually and or or, sometimes nor) preceding the final item in a list of three or more items.” (emphasis added)
So, is this actually an Oxford comma, or is it something else?
May 4, 2010
Telofy commented on the word jean dimmock
May 2, 2010
Thanks for fixing that.
The page design has improved a lot without my noticing. I’ve always used my own Stylish CSS—now I have tried deactivating it and it turns out I hardly need it anymore. Only as a typeface I prefer Gentium and in lists I like my words better with less vertical padding.
But I have to test the new and improved random word feature now.
Edit: Perhaps the random word service could still be improved by considering only the stems of lexemes, without grammatical affixes or perhaps generally without too productive affixes. Several times I got pretty common word with just a “-ly” or “-ness” attached. (Not that common words aren’t just as interesting as obscure ones…) There are great libraries for such things, but I guess that is your metier much more than mine. :-)
Lots of Gene Wolfe books have been added to the corpus. Marvelous! Liefsome! Thanks!
And the new translation feature is useful, too. What is the data source?
(Only something doesn’t seem to be working with the definitions—perhaps only the ones from the Century Dictionary—for example, on liefsome.)
May 1, 2010
Telofy commented on the word typography
“The principles of typography as I understand them are not a set of dead conventions but the tribal customs of the magic forest, where ancient voices speak from all directions and new ones move to unremembered forms.”
April 30, 2010
Telofy commented on the word eisegesis
Congrats to Word of the Day, eisegesis. You have been among my favorites since I read “eisegesistic” some three years ago in Gene Wolfe’s The Book of the New Sun (or more specifically The Sword of the Lictor):
“Anyway, for a long time—no one knows quite how long, I suppose, and anyway the world was not as near the sun’s failing then and its years were longer—these writings circulated or else lay moldering in cenotaphs where their authors had concealed them for safekeeping. They were fragmentary, contradictory, and eisegesistic. Then when some autarch (though they were not called autarchs then) hoped to recapture the dominion exercised by the first empire, they were gathered up by his servants, white-robed men who ransacked cocklofts and threw down the androsphinxes erected to memorialize the machines and entered the cubicula of moiraic women long dead. Their spoil was gathered into a great heap in the city of Nessus, which was then newly built, to be burned.”
April 29, 2010
Telofy commented on the word logophile
For me the word of choice is commonly verbivore.
April 25, 2010
Wow! Not only does it seem to me that everyone has been using lots of my favorite words in the last couple of weeks while I wasn’t looking (desultory, ameliorate, surreptitiously, troglodyte, perfunctory, …), no, also the definitions page looks exactly like I’ve always wanted it to, with all the information I need most frequently at the top. And the description for pronunciations is a great idea, too.
Marvelous! Thanks a lot! :-D
April 23, 2010
Telofy commented on the user PossibleUnderscore
Oh, great. What a relief. :-)
April 13, 2010
Me, too; Firefox 3.5.9 it seems (click “Help” and then “About Mozilla Firefox”) but I still can’t reproduce the problem. I have, however, noticed that the width of the table I have to use—unfortunately, for CSS is filtered out—is automatically set to 600 px, while its container only has a width of 450 px. Since, as I said, CSS is filtered out, I can’t do anything about it, but I was able to reduce the width of the table to the same 450 px by assigning it the class of the surrounding container. This actually shouldn’t fix the problem, but it’s all I can think of right now. So the white expanse is still there?
April 12, 2010
Telofy commented on the list wearenouns
Buckminster Fuller, to me, it seems, approves of your comment.
April 11, 2010
Strangest thing. What browser are you using?
April 8, 2010
Well, I pride myself on not having a “least favorite word”, and most of the things I am and I’m seeking start with a vowel sound (except “perfectionist”). Besides, while last time I checked it was still possible to sneak in arbitrary values, it had to be repeated with every update of the profile—that wasn’t convenient enough for me.
Great! Thanks a bunch for whitelisting me.
Telofy commented on the user bilby
It does! Yay! I restored the old version, but I haven’t yet tested whether CSS works the way it did in the early days. So far it’s using tables (*yuck*). ^^
Hehe, I’m lucky we don’t have Prolagus’s anti-spam button yet.
Thanks for the comment; it has been answered. :-)
Telofy delivers (Frühjahrsmüdigkeit). :-)
Do you have the license to link and I don’t, or why aren’t your links filtered? Very puzzling.
Edit: Oh, okay, anti-spam measures. I won’t tell anybody.
Telofy commented on the word quiet
So am I at the moment, but I’m still alive and well. *quietly wave*
March 27, 2010
Oh, how romantic! It’s always such a vivifying feeling when you enter your local type foundry early in the morning and you are greeted by the odor of freshly baked—I mean molded—still-warm sorts of letters and dashes, and then, at home, you can start your day with a hot cup of coffee and a fresh mat in the printing press. :-D
I’m looking forward to that blog post and to savoring those lovely statistics to the fullest. (Apropos, I recently used Google Charts to visualize my Free Rice experience.)
March 12, 2010
Telofy commented on the word categorical imperative
“Act only according to that maxim whereby you can at the same time will that it become a universal law.”
(I hope I’m not misquoting, but I like the version without the “should” so much.)
Always a pleasure!
En dash–addicts even use it “in place of a hyphen in a compound adjective when one of its elements is an open compound or when two or more of its elements are open compounds or hyphenated compounds” (Chicago), but so far I’ve preferred the role of a more moderate en dash enthusiast whenever feasible.
(Em dashes are cool, too.)
Update: Hmm. Now the stats page sports an em dash—there’s really no need for overcompensation here.
The new stats are very pretty, but is there a(n) (more detailed) explanation of how to read them?
(Btw., I don’t want to nitpick, but I think “1800-present” should read “1800–present”, with an en dash.)
March 11, 2010
March 2, 2010
Telofy commented on the word wordle
The last chapter of The Shadow of the Torturer by Gene Wolfe
Thanks. This game is truly educational.
Yeah, I remember playing around with that a while ago; thanks for reminding me.
My recent short story wordled.
I think _?’s question hasn’t yet been answered—unless bilby’s “?”, being linkified, was really an answer consisting of “?” and not the empty question “” plus question mark. In that case it would get fricking complicatored, so let me just assume the bilby–ruzuzu exchange is in fact complete in itself and answer _?’s perfectly pertinent question, lest he feel overlooked: pupil.
March 1, 2010
February 28, 2010
Telofy commented on the word azygous
If only they geminated!
(My socks are of a grayish color today.)
February 27, 2010
Telofy commented on the word penurious
“The cold winter wind seemed to carry with it a steaming, fetid wind from Green, as a frigid old man, penurious and hoary with age, might bear in his arms the rotten corpse of a beautiful young woman.”
—Gene Wolfe, In Green’s Jungles
February 26, 2010
Telofy commented on the word brei
“(Linguistics / Phonetics & Phonology) (intr) South African informal to speak with a uvular r, esp in Afrikaans Also brey”
February 23, 2010
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