VII.

Really Just Exploring The Oxford American Dictionary And All Its Idiosyncrasies.

tyro
A beginner or novice.

incumbent
Necessary for (someone) as a duty or responsibility. / (Of an official or regime) Currently holding office.

punditocracy
Media commentators, viewed collectively.

dandelion
[From French dent-de-lion, translation of medieval Latin dens leonis ‘lion’s tooth’ (because of the jagged shape of the leaves, and NOT because the flower looks like a very handsome lion).]

semblable
A counterpart or equal to someone.

hither
To or toward this place.

thither
To or toward that place.

plié
A movement in which a dancer bends the knees and straightens them again, usually with the feet turned out and heels firmly on the ground.

ontology
The branch of metaphysics dealing with the nature of being.

cosmology
The science of the origin and development of the universe.

teleology
The explanation of phenomena by the purpose they serve rather than by postulated causes.

ontological argument
The argument that God, being defined as most great or perfect, must exist, since a God who exists is greater than a God who does not.
(wtf? someone want to explain this to me??)

cosmological argument
An argument for the existence of God that claims that all things in nature depend on something else for their existence (i.e., are contingent), and that the whole cosmos must therefore itself depend on a being that exists independently or necessarily.

teleological argument
The argument for the existence of God from the evidence of order, and hence design, in nature.

argument from design
The argument that God’s existence is demonstrable from the evidence of design in the universe.

devoir
A person’s duty; Also, “To pay one’s devoirs”: pay one’s respects formally.

surfeit
An excessive amount of something. / To desire no more of something as a result of having consumed or done it to excess.

dialectic
The art of investigating or discussing the truth of opinions; Inquiry into metaphysical contradictions and their solutions; The existence or action of opposing social forces, concepts, etc.
The ancient Greeks used the term dialectic to refer to various methods of reasoning and discussion in order to discover the truth. More recently, Kant applied the term to the criticism of the contradictions that arise from supposing knowledge of objects beyond the limits of experience, e.g., the soul. Hegel applied the term to the process of thought by which apparent contradictions (which he termed thesis and antithesis) are seen to be part of a higher truth (synthesis).
[From Greek dialektikē (tekhnē) ‘(art) of debate’.]

obtund
Dull the sensitivity of; blunt; deaden.

vacillate
Alternate or waver between different opinions or actions; be indecisive.

amour fou
Uncontrollable or obsessive passion.

reticent
Not revealing one’s thoughts or feelings readily.

budgerigar
[formal term for “budgie”]

human
From Latin humanus, from homo ‘man, human being’.

person
From Latin persona ‘actor’s mask, character in a play’.

prevaricate
Speak or act in an evasive way. [From Latin praevaricat- ‘walked crookedly, deviated’.]

recrudesce
Break out again; recur. [From Latin recrudescere ‘become raw again’.]

mascarpone
A soft, mild Italian cream cheese.

trope
A figurative or metaphorical use of a word or expression. / A conventional idea or phrase.

verisimilitude
The appearance of being true or real. [From Latin veri (genitive of verus ‘true’ ) + similis ‘like.’]

agronomy
The science of soil management and crop production.

permaculture
The development of agricultural ecosystems intended to be sustainable and self-sufficient.

ruminant
An even-toed ungulate mammal that chews the cud regurgitated from its rumen. The ruminants comprise the cattle, sheep, antelopes, deer, giraffes, and their relatives.

palanquin
[ˌpalənˈkēn] A covered litter for one passenger, consisting of a large box carried on two horizontal poles by four or six bearers.

immolate
Kill or offer as a sacrifice, esp. by burning.

Quonset
A building made of corrugated metal and having a semicircular cross section.

coulee
A deep ravine. / A lava flow.

Furies
Spirits of punishment, often represented as three goddesses who executed the curses pronounced upon criminals, tortured the guilty with stings of conscience, and inflicted famines and pestilences.

Eumenides
[Via Latin from Greek, from eumenēs ‘well disposed’, from eu ‘well’ + menos ‘spirit’.] A name given to the Furies. The Eumenides probably originated as well-disposed deities of fertility {editor’s translation: goddesses}, whose name was given to the Furies either by confusion or euphemistically.

autogenetic
Self-generated.

mea culpa
An exclamation of one’s fault or error.

caduceus
An ancient Greek or Roman herald’s wand, typically one with two serpents twined around it, carried by the messenger god Hermes or Mercury.

uraeus
A representation of a sacred serpent as an emblem of supreme power, worn on the headdresses of ancient Egyptian deities and sovereigns.

ignominy
Public shame or disgrace.

dyspeptic
Of or having indigestion or consequent irritability or depression; A person who suffers from indigestion or irritability.

anomie
Lack of the usual social or ethical standards in an individual or group. [From Greek anomia, from anomos ‘lawless’.]

proscenium arch
The arch framing the opening between the stage and the auditorium in some theaters.

proscenium
The part of a theater stage in front of the curtain.

boîte
A small restaurant or nightclub.

maven
An expert or connoisseur.

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  • history.