Red River College Library

Word of the Day Archives

A list of the past entries in our "Word of the Day" feature:

17-Aug-17 Muster
Noun [muhs-ter]

1. An act of assembling.
2. Critical examination.


Time to muster the skills needed to serve students for the 2017-18 academic year.
Credit: Merriam Webster
15-Aug-17 Stringer
Noun [string-er]

1. News correspondent who is paid space rates.

2. A reporter who works for a publication or news agency on a
    part-time basis.

It's not uncommon to find a Creative Communication graduate start off as a stringer for a newspaper or broadcast network.
Credit: Merriam Webster
14-Aug-17 brazen
Adjective [brey-zuh n]

1. Sounding harsh and loud like struck brass.
2. Marked by shameless or disrespectful boldness.


Hannah opened the year-end report and read brazen rewrites of her sections.
Credit: Merriam Webster
11-Aug-17 Uncouth
Ajective [uhn-kooth]

Lacking in polish and grace.


Wexford hangs onto to his position as CEO despite saying uncouth things during his meetings.
Credit: Merriam Webster
10-Aug-17 Grandiose
Adjective [gran-dee-ohs]

Impressive because of uncommon largeness, scope, effect, or grandeur.


After The Crash Test Dummies finished their last song, a grandiose fireworks display lit up the night sky.
Credit: Merriam Webster
09-Aug-17 Zealot
Noun [zel-uh t]

1. Capitalized :  a member of a fanatical sect arising in Judea during the first century a.d. and militantly opposing the Roman domination of Palestine.

2. A fanatical partisan.

Wexford was a zealot for statistics. He believed numbers told the truth all the time.

Credit: Merriam Webster
08-Aug-17 Mojo
Noun [moh-joh]

1. Magic spell, hex, or charm
2. Magical power

Sometimes a study routine, one that works, feels like mojo for some students.
Credit: Merriam Webster
04-Aug-17 Credence
Noun [kreed-ns]

1. Mental acceptance as true or real .
2.  Credibility.

Lots of seat space on buses and fewer cars on the road lends credence most Winnipeggers are on holidays.
Credit: Merriam Webster
03-Aug-17 Peccadillo
Noun [pek-uh-dil-oh]

A slight offense

Hannah wondered if this latest peccadillo from Adam meant they had a serious problem in their relationship.
Credit: Merriam Webster
02-Aug-17 preternatural
Adjective [pree-ter-nach-er-uh l, -nach-ruh l]

1. Existing outside of nature.
2. Exceeding what is natural or regular.
3. Inexplicable by ordinary means; especially :  psychic

The Sentinels of New Orleans series by Suzanne Johnson serves up some story gumbo with a compelling heroine amid preternatural beings from ghosts to mermen.
Credit: Merriam Webster
01-Aug-17 Snark
Noun [snahrk]

An attitude or expression of mocking irreverence and sarcasm.

Hannah wrote a tactful reply to the email, avoiding the snark bubbling within her mind while composing the message.
Credit: Merriam Webster
31-Jul-17 Ribald
Adjective [rib-uh ld; spelling pronunciation rahy-buh ld]

1. Characterized by or using coarse indecent humor.
2. Crude, offensive

By day, Clara handles herself with propriety. By night, she enjoys getting together with her friends to swap ribald stories about their neighbours.

Credit: Merriam Webster
28-Jul-17 Muckrake
Verb [muhk-reyk]

 To search out and publicly expose real or apparent misconduct of a prominent individual or business.

Investigative units like the local CBC I-Team, or The Boston Globe's Spotlight team, muckrake stories through persistence and careful research.
Credit: Merriam Webster
27-Jul-17 Dubious
Adjective [doo-bee-uh s, dyoo-]

1. Unsettled in opinion
2. Of doubtful promise or outcome
3. Questionable or suspect as to true nature or quality

After interviewing Hannah, then checking other sources, the investigative reporter for the Gazette has an actual story, rather than a set of dubious claims.
Credit: Merriam Webster
26-Jul-17 Discreet
Ajective [dih-skreet]

1. Capable of preserving prudent silence.
2. Unobtrusive, unnoticeable

Hannah picked a discreet corner of the park to meet with the investigative reporter from The Gazette.

Credit: Merriam Webster
25-Jul-17 Retort
Verb [ri-tawrt]

To make a reply to :  to say in reply

"How am I supposed to learn this new system," Said Edna.
"You can retire," came the retort from a corner desk.

Credit: Merriam Webster
24-Jul-17 Scaramouch
Noun [skar-uh-mouch, -moosh]
1.  A stock character in the Italian commedia dell'arte that burlesques the Spanish don and is characterized by boastfulness and cowardliness.

2. A cowardly buffoon

Hannah pushed away from her desk to collect her breath, the ladies immediately knew the company scaramouch wrote another all-staff email.
Credit: Merriam Webster
21-Jul-17 Libertine
Noun [lib-er-teen, -tin]

1. A freethinker especially in religious matters.
2. A person who is unrestrained by convention or morality.

What is it with Las Vegas turning a responsible person into a libertine on vacation?
Credit: Merriam Webster
20-Jul-17 Geek
Noun  [geek]

1. A carnival performer often billed as a wild man whose act usually
   includes biting the head off a live chicken or snake
2. A person often of an intellectual bent who is disliked
3. An enthusiast or expert especially in a technological field or activity

This Marvel Cinematic geek would love to attend the Thor: Ragnarok panel at San Diego Comic-Con.
Credit: Merriam Webster
19-Jul-17 Retrofit
Verb [re-troh-fit]

1. To adapt to a new purpose or need.
2. To furnish (something, such as a computer, airplane, or building) with new or modified parts or equipment not available or considered necessary at the time of manufacture.

A friend's husband managed to retrofit a PC with Apple parts to run like a Mac.

Credit: Merriam Webster
18-Jul-17 sleek
Verb [sleek]

1. Smooth in speech or manner
2. Having a smooth well-groomed look
3. Having trim graceful lines

I am not looking for a sleek vehicle, just a something decent with good gas mileage.
Credit: Merriam Webster
17-Jul-17 Besotted
Adjective [bih-sot-id]

1. Blindly or utterly infatuated.
2. Intoxicated or stupefied especially with drink.

Besotted Game of Thrones fans awaits Sundays with anticipation for what comes next.
Credit: Merriam Webster
14-Jul-17 leisure
Noun [lee-zher, lezh-er]

Freedom provided by the cessation of activities

Some people call them holidays, I call it briefly living a life of leisure. See you soon.
Credit: Merriam Webster
13-Jul-17 obsequious
Adjective [uh b-see-kwee-uh s]

1. Marked by or exhibiting a fawning attentiveness

Ms. Rutherford still deducted 10% for lateness even as the student continued his obsequious ways in the classroom.
Credit: Merriam Webster
12-Jul-17 Binge
Noun [binj]

1. An unrestrained and often excessive indulgence
2. An act of excessive or compulsive consumption

I plan to binge Marvel's The Defenders on Netflix on August 18th.
Credit: Merriam Webster
11-Jul-17 Tendril
Noun [ten-dril]

1.  Something suggestive of a tendril.
2.  A leaf, stipule, or stem modified into a slender spirally coiling
    sensitive organ serving to attach a climbing plant to its support.

Slenderman looks like the stuff of nightmares dressed in his blacksuit with tendrils out his back to snatch unruly children.

Credit: Merriam Webster
10-Jul-17 Gallant
Noun [gal-uh nt] 

1. Courteously and elaborately attentive especially to ladies.

2. Showy in dress or bearing.

I get a sick feeling every time George R.R. Martin introduces a gallant character in his books.

Credit: Merriam Webster
07-Jul-17 Tantalizing
Adjective [tan-tl-ahy-zing]

 Possessing a quality that arouses or stimulates desire or interest;
   also,mockingly or teasingly out of reach.

HBO's tantalizing commercials for Game of Thrones' new season can't make July 16th come fast enough!
Credit: Merriam Webster
06-Jul-17 Machiavellian
Adjective [mak-ee-uh-vel-ee-uh n]

Suggesting the principles of conduct laid down by Machiavelli; specifically :  marked by cunning, duplicity, or bad faith

House of Cards follows Frank and Clare Underwood as they use Machiavellian methods to gain power in Washington, DC.
Credit: Merriam Webster
05-Jul-17 Titillating
transitive/intransitive verb [tit-l-ey-ting]

1.  To excite pleasurably :  arouse by stimulation
2.  To act as a stimulant to pleasurable excitement

If anyone needs to find me on my vacation, I will be in my lawn chair enjoying a titillating novel.
Credit: Merriam Webster
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