Party Like a President

On my last birthday, my brother gave me a book about the US President’s drinking, gambling and carousing habits through the years. In it I found a recipe for syllabub, an olde English dessert, which was popular during James Monroe’s presidency.

Here’s the recipe: 2/3 c. white wine, 1/3 c. sherry, 2 T. grated lemon zest, ¼ c. lemon juice, 2/3 c. sugar, 2 c. heavy cream, fresh mint sprigs and berries. Mix the wine, sherry, lemon zest and lemon juice in a bowl. Stir in the sugar until dissolved.

 

 

In a separate bowl, whip the cream until the mixture forms into medium-size stiff peaks. Then, combine and stir with the wine mixture. Scoop the mixture into wineglasses. Cover the glasses and chill in the refrigerator for at least 12 hours. When ready to serve, top with the mint and berries.

 

 

Source: Party Like a President: True Tales of Inebriation, Lechery and Mischief from the Oval Office, By Brian Abrams. Workman Publishing. 2015

My ideal…insect

This is a strange word, it has two completely unrelated meanings…which I find fascinating! Let me know if you agree….

Imago is a noun, meaning:
1. The final or adult stage of an insect.

 

 

2. An idealized image of someone, formed in childhood and persisting in later life.

Etymology: From Latin imago (image). Ultimately from the Indo-European root aim- (copy), which also gave us emulate, imitate, image, imagine, and emulous. Earliest documented use: 1787. Source: http://wordsmith.org/words/imago.html

 

 

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You Pick Two

I chose today’s word, not because it is exotic or rare, but because it has two meanings that are wildly different from each other. I find that fascinating!

Solvent is both a noun and an adjective: As a noun, it means: 1. something that dissolves another thing, and 2. something that solves a problem.

 

 

As an adjective, it means: 1. able to pay one’s debts, and 2. able to dissolve another substance.

ETYMOLOGY: From Latin solvere (to loosen, to dissolve, to pay). Ultimately from the Indo-European root pleu- (to flow), that is also the source of flow, float, flit, fly, flutter, pulmonary, pneumonic, pluvial, fluvial, effluvium, fletcher, and plutocracy. Earliest documented use: 1653.

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My guiding star

Lodestar is a noun meaning: someone or something that serves as a guiding principle, model, inspiration, ambition, etc.

 

 

ETYMOLOGY: From Old English lad (way) + star. A lodestar is called so because it’s used in navigation, it shows the way. Earliest documented use: 1374

 

“He was her rock, the lodestar on which she could focus.” Laura Benedict; Bliss House; Pegasus Books; 2014.

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The Death Star

star-exploding1

 

Cagastrical is an adjective used to describe diseases such as plague and fever, which were once thought to be caused by the influence of malignant stars.

 

 

the-death-star1

 

(No, I am not making this up, although I am a fan of Star Wars movies!) The word comes from Greek root words meaning “evil star”.

 

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This word was found in the wonderful and often hilarious book:  Weird and Wonderful Words, edited by Erin McKean

Gros Melons- Not what you think!

punkin3-sept-21-2015While doing a word search on the internet, I found this information on the word “pumpkin”,

which, coincidentally…….is the name of one of my cats!

 

 

squirrel on pumpkin-small

“During the crisp autumn months, pumpkins pop up everywhere — on our porches, in shop windows, and at the local farmer’s market.

 

 

 

melons-variety1They are part of the gourd family, along with cucumbers, honeydew, watermelon, cantaloupe, and zucchini. Pumpkins were originally called “gros melons“ by French explorer Jacques Cartier in 1584.

 

 

pumpkins-variety1

The English translation was “pompions,” which eventually evolved into our modern word, “pumpkin.” -By Caroline Young”

 

A Sad Goodbye to Mary Tyler Moore

mary-tyler-moore1While watching the Mary Tyler Moore tribute, they used the word “eponymous” referring to her TV show, and I liked the sound of the word so I thought I’d share its meaning and origins with you.

Eponymous is an adjective meaning: 1. Of, relating to, or constituting an eponym, such as “The Mary Tyler Moore” Show.

 

 

he-man_12. Named after something else or deriving from an existing name or word: “Programs such as He-Man and Masters of the Universe … were all created with the explicit purpose of selling the eponymous toys to children”. Source: http://www.thefreedictionary.com/eponymous

 

 

onyma-greek-wordEtymology notes: Eponymous comes from the Greek adjective epōnymos, which is itself from onyma, meaning “name.” “Onyma” has lent its name to a number of English words, including “synonymous,” “pseudonym,” and “anonymous.” Traditionally, an eponymous person or thing (i.e., an “eponym”) might be a mythical ancestor or totem believed to be the source of a clan’s name.

Source: https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/eponymous