denoting pedantic words or expressions used only in academic writing.modifier noun: inkhorn“I will avoid many of the inkhorn terms coined by the narratologists”
Did You Know?
Picture an ancient scribe, pen in hand, a small ink bottle made from an animal’s horn strapped to his belt, ready to record the great events of history. In 14th-century England, such ink bottles were dubbed (not surprisingly) inkhorns. During the Renaissance, learned writers often borrowed words from Latin and Greek, eschewing vulgar English alternatives. But in the 16th century, some scholars argued for the use of native terms over Latinate forms, and a lively intellectual debate over the merits of each began. Those who favored English branded what they considered ostentatious Latinisms “inkhorn terms” after the bottles carried by scholars, and since then we have used inkhorn as an adjective for Latinate or pretentious language.
producing or capable of producing offspring, fruit, vegetation, etc., in abundance; prolific; fruitful: fecund parents; fecund farmland.very productive or creative intellectually: the fecund years of the Italian Renaissance.
1375–1425; late Middle English < Latin fēcundus, equivalent to fē- (see fetus) + -cundus adj. suffix; replacing late Middle English fecounde < Anglo-FrenchRelated formsnon·fe·cund, adjectiveun·fe·cund, adjective
thick, sticky dark syrup made from partly refined sugar; molasses. cloying sentimentality or flattery.” enough of this treacle—let’s get back to business
Middle English (originally denoting an antidote against venom): from Old French triacle, via Latin from Greek thēriakē ‘antidote against venom’, feminine of thēriakos (adjective), from thērion ‘wild beast British
(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”
of or like a serpent or snake.
winding and twisting like a snake.
“serpentine country lanes”
winding · windy · zigzag · zigzagging · twisting · twisty · turning · meandering · curving · sinuous · snaking · snaky · tortuous · anfractuous · flexuous · meandrous · serpentiform antonyms:
complex, cunning, or treacherous.
“his charm was too subtle and serpentine for me” synonyms:
complicated · intricate · complex · involved · tortuous · convoluted · tangled · elaborate · knotty · confusing · bewildering · baffling · inextricable · entangled · impenetrable · Byzantine · Daedalian · Gordian · involute · involuted antonyms:
straightforward · simple NOUN
a dark green mineral consisting of hydrated magnesium silicate, sometimes mottled or spotted like a snake’s skin.
a riding exercise consisting of a series of half-circles made alternately to right and left.
a kind of cannon, used especially in the 15th and 16th centuries.
VERB serpentines (third person present) · serpentined (past tense) · serpentined (past participle) · serpentining (present participle)
move or lie in a winding path or line.
“fresh tire tracks serpentined back toward the hopper”
late Middle English: via Old French from late Latin serpentinus ( see serpent).
adjective am-BIV-uh-lunt 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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