Word of the Day

by Janie Jones

I have always considered my vocabulary to be fairly comprehensive.  I’m an avid reader, and preferring classics often exposes me to words which have faded from common usage.  Plus, in my grade school experience I seem to recall a large focus on learning random vocabulary words every week up through the sixth grade.  While I haven’t always been a good speller, I’ve had a love hate relationship with my dictionary.  I hate looking up spellings (“How,” I would whine, “am I supposed to find a word listed in alphabetical order if I don’t know how it’s spelled?”) but I do love just reading all the meanings of words and looking up what long multisyllabic words mean.  Studying science also gives me exposure to a lot of Latin derivatives, and if you know the roots of words, you can often wrestle out the meanings of words you haven’t encountered before.

Just the other day, though, I was stumped.

A student from a professor other than the one I work for brought his essay assignment rubric to ask for help on how to prepare his essay.  One of the criteria was to consider the exigency of his topic.

Exigency.

I could only guess it meant whether or not the topic was pertinent and relevant in today’s society.

As it turns out I was wrong.  After coming home and consulting my well-worn dictionary I discovered that it essentially means requiring urgent action or attention.  Somehow I seriously doubt many Local College students will write a 2-3 page essay that meets this particular quality.

Unlike, of course, this blog’s material….

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2 Comments to “Word of the Day”

  1. I’m learning lots of new words this week 😦 I signed up for a brief online course on drug origins and am waaay beyond my below basic science from 35 years ago.

  2. Sounds fascinating though! Good luck!

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