Interesting Words

Interesting Words: Bright of the Sky by Kay Kenyon

View this book on Amazon.comOne of the things I often do as I'm reading a novel or short story is keep track of words whose definitions I do not know or that I find interesting. Either way, these interesting words are ones I feel might be of use in my own writing. That, and it's good to expand one's vocabulary every once in a while.

This latest round of interesting words comes from Kay Kenyon's Bright of the Sky.

alkaloid: Any of various organic compounds normally with basic chemical properties and usually containing at least one nitrogen atom in a heterocyclic ring, occurring chiefly in many vascular plants and some fungi.

archon: A high official; a ruler.

cyanogenic: Capable of producing cyanide.

demiurge: A powerful creative force or personality.

epicanthic: Of or pertaining to an epicanthis; growing in or upon a canthus or corner of the eye.

espalier: A tree or shrub that is trained to grow in a flat plane against a wall, often in a symmetrical pattern.

evanescent: Vanishing or likely to vanish like vapor.

glycoside: Any of a group of organic compounds, occurring abundantly in plants, that yield a sugar and one or more nonsugar substances on hydrolysis.

gulag: A forced labor camp or prison, especially for political dissidents.

harangue: A long pompous speech, especially one delivered before a gathering.

legate: A person commissioned to represent a state, or the highest authority in the state, in a foreign state or court; a deputy; an ambassador.

meritocracy: A system in which advancement is based on individual ability or achievement.

phenolic: Any of various synthetic thermosetting resins, obtained by the reaction of phenols with simple aldehydes and used to make molded products and as coatings and adhesives.

tannin: Any of various chemically different substances capable of promoting tanning.

terpenoid: A very large class of naturally occurring and synthetic organic compounds formally derived from the hydrocarbon isoprene; they include many volatile compounds used in perfume and food flavours, turpentine, the steroids, the carotene pigments and rubber.

toadyism: The practice of meanly fawning on another; base sycophancy; servile adulation.

unctuous: Containing or composed of oil or fat.

vilification: slanderous or malicious defamation; character assassination

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