The Wordnik Word of the Day for July 23, 2012 is
(noun) A mysterious noise heard over the ocean in quiet, foggy weather off the coast of Belgium and Holland.
‘Mistpouffer’ translates from the Dutch as ‘fog pistol.’
The Wordnik Word of the Day for July 19, 2012 is
(noun) An ancient kind of divination for the detection of crime by means of an ax or axes.
‘Axinomancy’ comes from the Greek ‘axine’ and ‘manteia,’ oracle, divination.
The Wordnik Word of the Day for July 17, 2012 is
(noun) One whose business it is to make sport for others by jokes and ridiculous posturing; a buffoon; a clown.
The origin of 'merry-andrew' has long been disputed. It may come from the stage name of a particular performer at the Bartholomew Fair in the 17th century.
The Wordnik Word of the Day for July 16, 2012 is
(noun) An object of scandal or scorn.
'Pointingstock' is related to 'laughingstock,' which comes from the idea of a 'whipping-stock' or 'whipping-post,' or 'the post to which are tied persons condemned to punishment by whipping; hence, the punishment itself.' Sometimes 'pointing-stock.'
NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory has discovered an extraordinary outburst by a black hole in the spiral galaxy M83, located about 15 million light years from Earth. Using Chandra, astronomers found a new ultraluminous X-ray source, or ULX. These objects give off more X-rays than most normal binary systems in which a companion star is in orbit around a neutron star or black hole. Image Credit: NASA/CXC/Curtin University/R.Soria et al.
A new X-Ray source, just in time for Friday the 13th.
The Wordnik Word of the Day for July 10, 2012 is
(noun) A very uncomfortably hot, moist atmosphere in which one ‘sizzles.’
‘Sizzard’ seems to be a blend of ‘sizzle’ and ‘blizzard.’
The Word of the Day for July 9 is:
hydromancy HYE-druh-man-see noun
: divination by the appearance or motion of liquids (as water)
Madame Forthwith practices hydromancy, using a bowl of clear water to predict the future rather than the traditional crystal ball.
"Did that mean the Elders couldn't do hydromancy, or that they were too law-abiding to try it? I took a deep breath." — From Suzanne Johnson's 2012 fantasy novel Royal Street
Did you know?
If you've ever encountered a sorceress or a wizard peering into a "scrying bowl" as part of a movie or a book, you've witnessed a (fictionalized) version of "hydromancy." The word has been used since at least the 14th century to describe the use of water in divination — examples include predicting the future by the motion of the tides or contacting spirits using still water. "Hydromancy" is believed to derive ultimately from the Greek words for "water" ("hydōr") and "divination" ("manteia"); it came to English via Latin "hydromantia." The ancient Greeks who relied on hydromancy also gave us the names for related forms of divination, such as "necromancy" (using the dead), "pyromancy" (with fire), and even "rhabdomancy," a fancy and now rare word for "divination with wands or rods."
Here they are, photos of the favorite vacation (and hiding) spots of that elusive Pseudonymous Bosch.
We recommend you visit any of these places if you want to see amazing sites, and/or if there are evil alchemists pursuing you relentlessly.
Click on the photo of Bouvet Island - the most remote island in the world - to see more pics.
A 12 year old makes a tape ... and talks to himself in the future (our present/past).
Click on the TV and watch time warp.
Not sure if you saw the news, but the San Diego 4th of July fireworks display was supposed to last 20 minutes, but instead lasted about 30 seconds as all of the fireworks went off at once. Could those pyrotechnic fiends in the Midnight Sun somehow be responsible for lighting up this fireworks night sun? We may never know.
Click on the image to see video of this fireworks mess up.
Agent MB writes in with some suspicions:
I am wondering who you are. I have concluded that you are probably a magician, and a professional one at that. However you may just be a writer, just someone fascinated with the art. I know you enjoy magic because of your name, Pseudonymous Bosch, it is very much related to Hieronymus Bosch, the person who made the painting known by most all magicians, "The Conjuror."
Well, MB, we love the painting. Watch out while playing street games, you might get pick-pocketed!
PS Here's the painting.
The Wordnik Word of the Day for June 27, 2012 is
(adj) Producing geese; that is, producing the cirripeds formerly called tree-geese or goose-mussels, which adhere to submerged wood or stone, but were formerly supposed to grow on trees, and then to drop off into the water and turn into geese.
‘Anatiferous’ comes from the Latin ‘anas,’ duck, plus ‘ferous,’ producing, containing. The Old English word for ‘duck’ was ‘ened,’ and was replaced by ‘ducan,’ to duck, dive. ‘Barnacle’ refers to a species of wild goose, once believed to hatch from barnacles attached to trees, as it ‘was known in the British islands only as a visitor.’
The Word of the Day for June 24 is:
borborygmus bor-buh-RIG-mus noun, plural borborygmi
: intestinal rumbling caused by moving gas
The hall was very quiet as the test-takers concentrated on the task at hand, and Cara hoped that her embarrassing borborygmus went mostly unnoticed.
"'Both men are presenting the classic symptoms [of severe typhoid fever] — fever, sudden prostration, abdominal distress, delirium, right lower quadrant borborygmi.' Springer counted off the symptoms on the fingers of his left hand as if he were on formal ground rounds." — From Robin Cook's 2011 novel Death Benefit
Did you know?
Unless you're a gastroenterologist, chances are you never knew there was a name for those loud gurglings your belly sometimes makes. And if in looking at the word, you thought it was just some crazy coinage invented by someone who thought the word matched the rumbling sound it represented, you'd be right, in a way. We picked it up from New Latin, but it traces to the Greek verb "borboryzein," which means "to rumble." It is believed that the Greek verb was coined to imitate the digestive noises made by a stomach. "Borborygmus" has been part of English for at least 250 years; its earliest known use dates from around 1724.
The Wordnik Word of the Day for June 22, 2012 is
(noun) Worship of the dead; worship of the spirits of the dead, or of ancestors; excessive veneration or sentimental reverence toward the dead.
‘Necrolatry’ comes from the Greek ‘nekros,’ dead body, corpse, dead person, plus ‘latreia,’ worship, service paid to the gods, hired labor.
A sock monster. Thanks, Agent ME!
Writer Ray Bradbury passed away on June 5th.
Bradbury, a master of science fiction whose imaginative and lyrical evocations of the future reflected both the optimism and the anxieties of his own postwar America, died on Tuesday in Los Angeles. He was 91.
Read the rest of the article here.