1: a: of or relating to the alphabet b : alphabetically arranged 2: rudimentary
Did You Know?
The history of abecedarian is as simple as ABC—literally. The term’s Late Latin ancestor, abecedārius (which meant “alphabetical”), was created as a combination of the letters A, B, C, and D, plus the adjective suffix -arius; you can hear the echo of that origin in the pronunciation of the English term (think “ABC-darian”). In its oldest documented English uses in the early 1600s, abecedarian was a noun meaning “one learning the rudiments of something”; it specifically referred to someone who was learning the alphabet. The adjective began appearing in English texts a few decades after the noun.
Examples of ABECEDARIAN
The children recited an abecedarian chant,
beginning with “A is for apple” and ending with “Z is for
“Aficionados of Sue
Grafton’s popular detective novels starring Kinsey Millhone will not be
disappointed by S is for
Silence, Grafton’s 19th book in her abecedarian series launched in 1982 with A is for Alibi.”
— Jan Collins, The State (Columbia, South
Carolina), 11 Dec. 2005
(of a person or way of life) devoted to reading and studying rather than worldly interests.
“by comparison I was very bookish, intellectual, and wordy in a wrong way” synonyms:
studious · scholarly · academic · literary · intellectual · highbrow · erudite · learned · well read · widely read · educated · well educated · well informed · knowledgeable · cultured · accomplished · pedantic · pedagogical · donnish · bluestocking · cerebral · serious · earnest · thoughtful · impractical · ivory-towerish · brainy · egghead · lettered · clerkly antonyms:
(of language or writing) literary in style or allusion.
“long bookish scholarship” · “a bookish but eloquent erotic memoir”
adjective am-BIV-uh-lu Definition
: having or showing simultaneous and contradictory attitudes or feelings toward something : characterized by ambivalence
Did You Know?
The words ambivalent and ambivalence entered English during the early 20th century in the field of psychology. They came to us through the International Scientific Vocabulary, a set of words common to people of science who speak different languages. The prefix ambi- means “both,” and the -valent and -valence parts ultimately derive from the Latin verb valēre, meaning “to be strong.” Not surprisingly, an ambivalent person is someone who has strong feelings on more than one side of a question or issue.
Bianca was ambivalent about starting her first year away at college—excited for the new opportunities that awaited but sad to leave her friends and family back home.
“A new study from LinkedIn found that many people feel ambivalent in their careers—wondering if they should stay in the same job or take time to invest in learning new skills or even change to a new path altogether.” — Shelcy V. Joseph, Forbes, 3 Sept. 2018
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