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May. 14th, 2012

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Doors challenge -- Week 82 Game

Read the Doors challenge Rules

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Fulfilled a challenge? You may suggest one new Door challenge here or at the game board =)
The mod may adjust its difficulty level accordingly.

Go back to the game @ [ DW | LJ ].



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Oct. 29th, 2011

roll the dice

euthanize

http://wordsmith.org/words/euthanize.html

PRONUNCIATION:
(YOO-thuh-nyz)

MEANING:
verb tr.: Ending life for humane reasons, such as to avoid pain from an incurable condition.

ETYMOLOGY:
Back-formation from euthanasia (mercy killing), from Greek eu- (good) + thanatos (death). Earliest documented use: 1931. A related word is thanatophobia (an abnormal fear of death).

USAGE:
"A terminally sick humpback whale that became stranded on a beach in Western Australia two weeks ago was euthanized Thursday with an explosive charge."
Stranded, Sick Whale Euthanized With Explosives; Associated Press (New York); Sep 3, 2010.
pentagram version

Aesopian\ee-SOH-pee-un\

http://www.merriam-webster.com/word-of-the-day/2011/10/17/

DEFINITION
adjective

1: of, relating to, or characteristic of Aesop or his fables
2: conveying an innocent meaning to an outsider but a hidden meaning to a member of a conspiracy or underground movement

EXAMPLES
What sounded like a friendly greeting from Jerome was in fact Aesopian code warning his partner, who had just entered the apartment, that an uninvited visitor was in the room.

"[Poet Joseph Brodsky] was very different from what might be called the established dissidents of the time -- Evtushenko, Voznesensky, Akhmadulina -- subtle, carefully sardonic, measuredly Aesopian so as to barely dodge the regime's hammer and find a wavering measure of protection in its more moderate elements."
-- From a book review by Richard Eder in the Boston Globe, January 16, 2011

DID YOU KNOW?
Aesop’s fables are well-known. On the surface, they are entertaining stories, featuring animals who speak and act like humans. But they also have an underlying purpose, which is to teach a moral lesson. In the 20th century, "Aesopian" -- which had previously meant simply "characteristic of Aesop or his fables" -- took on an extended meaning. "Aesopian language" referred to the cryptic or ambiguous language authors used in subversive material, often to avoid censorship. This use originated in Russia with "ezopovski," the Russian version of the term. Today, "Aesopian" occasionally means "having hidden meaning" without any implications of subversive political meaning or avoidance of censorship.
charmed version

mesmerize

http://dictionary.reference.com/wordoftheday/archive/2011/10/25.html

\MEZ-muh-rahyz\ , verb;
1. To spellbind; fascinate.
2. To hypnotize.
3. To compel by fascination.

Quotes:
What a joy it was to mesmerize his audience, delight them, sell them the medicine, trick them.
-- Jeffery Deaver, The Vanished Man

“This gentleman," said Fraisier, darting at Schmucke one of those poisonous glances wherewith he was wont to mesmerize his victims, just as a spider mesmerizes a fly...
-- Honoré de Balzac, The Human Comedy

Origin:
Mesmerize is an eponym from Franz Anton Mesmer (1734-1815), an Austrian physician who developed a theory of animal magnetism and a mysterious body fluid which allows one person to hypnotize another.
wheel version

pediculous\pih-DIK-yuh-lus\

http://www.merriam-webster.com/word-of-the-day/2011/10/25/

DEFINITION
adjective

: infested with lice
: lousy

EXAMPLES
Several third-graders had to be treated for lice after being exposed to a pediculous classmate.

"We prisoners called ourselves the Jerseys, not out of respect for this vile, pediculous hulk [the prison ship Jersey], but because it was our commonality, the glue that held us in its glorious stink." -- From the 2008 novel Johnny One-Eye by Jerome Charyn

DID YOU KNOW?
Count on the English language's Latin lexical options to pretty up the unpleasant. You can have an entire conversation about lice and avoid the l-word entirely using "pediculous" and its relatives. None of the words (from "pediculus," meaning "louse") is remotely common -- most of them are so uncommon that they appear only in our Unabridged dictionary -- but they're all available to you should you feel the need for them. There's "pediculosis," meaning "infestation with lice"; "pedicular," meaning "of or relating to lice"; and "pediculoid," meaning "resembling or related to the common lice." "Pediculid" names a particular kind of louse -- one of the family Pediculidae. And if you'd like to put an end to all of this you might require a "pediculicide" -- defined as "an agent for destroying lice."
version 2.5

hendiadys\hen-DYE-uh-dis\

http://www.merriam-webster.com/word-of-the-day/2011/10/14/

DEFINITION
noun

: the expression of an idea by the use of usually two independent words connected by and (as nice and warm)

EXAMPLES
The hendiadys "good and loud" appears in many reviews of the concert. "In the source text, Claudius's distress is represented through doubling -- more specifically, in the form of a hendiadys where the two nouns 'discord' and 'dismay' are connected by 'and,' which creates intensification."
-- From Roshni Mooneeram and Jonathan Hope's 2009 book From Creole to Standard: Shakespeare, Language, and Literature in a Postcolonial Context

DID YOU KNOW?
William Shakespeare often used hendiadys. For example, his character Macbeth, speaking of the passage of life, says "It is a tale / Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, / Signifying nothing." For Shakespeare, the construction "sound and fury" was more effective than "furious sound." The word "hendiadys" is a modification of the Greek phrase "hen dia dyoin." Given that "hen dia dyoin" literally means "one through two," it's a perfect parent for a word that describes the expression of a single concept using two words, as in the phrase "rough and tough." As you can imagine, hendiadys is a common element in everyday speech and writing.
treasure map

cosmogony

http://dictionary.reference.com/wordoftheday/archive/2011/10/14.html

\koz-MOG-uh-nee\ , noun;
1. A theory or story of the origin and development of the universe.
Definition of cosmogony|See synonyms|Comment on today's word|Suggest tomorrow's word

Quotes:
In the shortest (but probably not the earliest) form of the cosmogony, the beginning of all things is found in the watery abyss.
-- Charles Dudley Warner, A Library of the World's Best Literature, Vol. 1

He narrowed it down to a matter of cosmogony. The grandfather had some curious views about the constitution of the universe.
-- Henry Miller, Moloch: Or, This Gentile World

Origin:
Cosmogony stems from the Greek kosmogonia meaning "creation of the world," from kosmos "world, universe" and -gonia "a begetting."
roll the dice

gentlemen's agreement

http://wordsmith.org/words/gentlemens_agreement.html

PRONUNCIATION:
(JEN-tl-manz uh-GREE-muhnt)

MEANING:
noun: An agreement that's based on honor and not legally binding.

ETYMOLOGY:
From the idea that a gentleman (a civilized man of good standing) will honor an agreement he has entered. Earliest documented use: 1886.

USAGE:
"Since the Iran-Iraq war, the two countries have had a gentlemen's agreement to maintain similar quotas within OPEC."
Carola Hoyos; Seismic Shock As Demand Shifts East; The Financial Times (London, UK); Mar 29, 2010.
pentagram version

sublimate\SUB-luh-mayt\

http://www.merriam-webster.com/word-of-the-day/2011/10/21/

DEFINITION
verb

1: to cause to pass directly from the solid to the vapor state
2: to direct the expression of (a desire or impulse) from a primitive to a more socially and culturally acceptable form

EXAMPLES
Jeb's letter made Marcy want to scream and throw things, but instead she sublimated her anger by writing a tart reply.

"Watching both films, it was hard not to sense a certain hesitation on the part of the filmmakers, as if they'd sublimated their darkest artistic impulses to a reflexive posture of decency and restraint…."
-- From an article by Justin Chang in Variety, August 22, 2011

DID YOU KNOW?
To sublimate is to change the form, but not the essence. Physically speaking, it means to transform solid to vapor; psychologically, it means changing the outlet, or means, of expression from something base and inappropriate to something more positive or acceptable. The word "sublimate" comes from the Latin verb "sublimare," which means "to lift up" or "raise" and which is also the ancestor of our "sublime." "Sublimate" itself once meant "to elevate to a place of dignity or honor" or "to give a more elevated character to," but these meanings are now obsolete.
charmed version

intuit

http://wordsmith.org/words/intuit.html

PRONUNCIATION:
(in-TOO-it, -tyoo-)

MEANING:
verb intr.: To know or sense immediately without the use of reasoning.

ETYMOLOGY:
Back-formation from intuition, from Latin intueri (to gaze at, contemplate), from tueri (to watch). Earliest documented use: 1776.

USAGE:
"Graham Swift is most perceptive about undercurrents of feeling, motive, what is not said but intuited between people."
Tim Upperton; Terror Seeps Through Journey Back in Time; Waikato Times (New Zealand); Aug 13, 2011.

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