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Wondrous Words Wednesday

May 12, 2010

Wondrous Words Wednesday is a weekly meme where we share new (to us) words that we’ve encountered in our reading.  If you want to play along, grab the button, and join the fun!  (Don’t forget to leave a link in the comments if you’re participating.)  All of my words this week came from my nifty Word-a-Day calendar.

1. pilgarlic – “Anton was dismissed as an old pilgarlic until he figured out a way to save the villager’s crops from a plague of locusts.”

Pilgarlic has several meanings: a bald head or a bald-headed man is the most common.  In this sentence, though, it means a man looked upon with humorous contempt or mock pity.  Pilgarlic come from the supposed resemblance between a bald head and peeled garlic – “pilled garlic” in British dialect.


2. koine – “Inevitably, various koines developed in the early British colonies as different dialects converged.”

Koine is a language of a region that has become the common or standard language of a larger area.  Basically, a koine adopts those grammatical and lexical elments from the dialects of the region that are easily recognized by most speakers and dispense with those that are not.


3. earwig– “Martin earwigged several of his coworkers, asking for their support in his effort to fill the position left open by the retiring editor in chief.”

Earwig means to annoy or attempt to influence by private talk.  Earwigs are small insects that once were thought to crawl into ears of sleeping people.  Over time, people connected the idea of having an insect in one’s ear to situations that involve whispering or speaking privately into someone’s ear.


What new words have you encountered lately?

28 Comments leave one →
  1. May 12, 2010 7:08 am

    I have come across the last two but pilgarlic is new to me.

  2. May 12, 2010 7:13 am

    “Pilgarlic” is hilarious! 🙂

    Check out my words at:

  3. May 12, 2010 7:54 am

    Wow! When I read The Unnamed, I will have to keep a dictionary on my lap. I never heard of any of these words. It’s fun learning new vocabulary. Sadly, I don’t have a single word for today. When I don’t have a word to share, I hate it. Have fun.

  4. May 12, 2010 8:08 am

    Earwigs *shudder* Hate those.

  5. May 12, 2010 8:19 am

    Earwigged is a great word. I think I knew it but I know I’ve never used it.

  6. May 12, 2010 8:25 am

    I had actually learned the term earwig before, but I don’t remember where. The other two words are new to me.

    Here are my last words…

  7. May 12, 2010 8:27 am

    Earwig is kind of like an earworm, huh?

    Here are mine for this week:

  8. May 12, 2010 8:32 am

    Heard of earwig but not the other 2. Am thinking I may use pilgarlic when talking to hubby lol. My words are posted here

  9. May 12, 2010 8:35 am

    All those words are great. Pilgarlic is the funniest. I wasn’t aware that earwig could be used as a verb; I never know what I’ll learn on Wednesdays.

    I’ve got three words here:

  10. May 12, 2010 9:13 am

    Interesting – I’ve heard “earwormed” but never “earwigged”. Good words this week!

    My words are here.

  11. DanaB permalink
    May 12, 2010 9:32 am

    LOL, pilgarlic!
    I took my word from a ‘word of the day’ gadget again, I love those things!!


  12. May 12, 2010 10:01 am

    I never heard of pilgarlic before but have heard of earwig.

  13. May 12, 2010 10:02 am

    Pilgarlic is such a strange word! I have never heard of it before! Also, I wasn’t aware that earwig could be a verb. The only earwig I know of is the insect. These definitions were wonderful today! Thanks for sharing them!!

  14. May 12, 2010 10:24 am

    Earwig sounds like a word that I might use…thanks for sharing these today! My words are here:

  15. May 12, 2010 10:26 am

    Earwig is the only one I knew. I’m glad I didn’t know it had something to do with bugs crawling in one’s ear. Eww – bad visual there.

    I have two new-to-me words from a classic. You can find them HERE.

  16. May 12, 2010 11:11 am

    I love piligarlic! I’m going to have to start working it into some of my conversations.

  17. May 12, 2010 12:15 pm

    Pilgarlic is a funny word, isn’t it?! I “learned” it a while ago but then forgot about it until now.

    Koine is certainly new to me.

    I hadn’t heard earwig as a verb. We have earwig insects here–they are rather annoying! We used to buy fresh tomatoes from a house nearby and we called the place “Earwig Farms” because we’d find earwigs in the bags of tomatoes we brought home (luckily the tomatoes were unharmed, and very delicious).

    Great words, Kathy! I will add them to my ever-growing WWW vocabulary list. 🙂

  18. May 12, 2010 1:19 pm

    Earwig is a squiggle lotsa legged bug to me…. lol

    Great bunch of words!

    None again for me this week.

  19. May 12, 2010 3:07 pm

    All new to me this week. *repeats them to self to remember*

  20. May 12, 2010 4:13 pm

    I like the word pilgarlic, although I never heard of it until now. Thanks for sharing these words with us. 🙂

  21. May 12, 2010 4:20 pm

    Great words! I had never heard of the first two, and had only known an earwig to be the bug that hides underneath my planters on my balcony, lol.

    My words are from the Time Traveler’s Wife and can be found here .

  22. May 12, 2010 4:28 pm

    Pilgarlic is such a strange sounding word. Leave it up to those crazy British to make that word!! LOL..:D

  23. May 12, 2010 5:19 pm

    I’m with Staci – don’t you love those British words?!!!

  24. May 13, 2010 2:02 am

    Earwig is helpful. Very interesting and new to me.

  25. May 13, 2010 4:05 pm

    “pilgarlic”…going to have to use that soon!

  26. May 17, 2010 10:40 pm

    Well, those are some wacky new words to me!

  27. May 18, 2010 9:04 am

    I love “pilgarlic”! And that’s a new-to-me word that I have a chance of remembering (great visual, the pilled garlic head)

  28. May 19, 2010 6:12 am

    I love all your words today. These are new words for me. I’ve seen the first one. Had an idea what it meant. Didn’t have a “sure” meaning. Thanks for all of your words.

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