Skip to Content

Good Words

aleatory
AY·lee·ə·tor·ee
adj. Dependent on uncertain things, random.
anaphora
ə·NAH·fər·ə
n. Repetition of a word or phrase at the beginning of a series of clauses, sentences, or paragraphs.
compare epistrophe
apotheosis
ə·pah·thee·OH·sis
n. The highest point of development of something
2 Ascension to heaven; deification.
antediluvean
an·ti··LOO·vee·ən
adj. Of the period before the Biblical flood.
2 Figuratively, especially archaic.
Anthropocene
AN·thrə··seen
n. The current geological epoch, in which human activity has been the dominant influence on the environment.
aubade
oh·BAHD
n. A musical piece or poem about the dawn.
compare nocturne
aureate
OR·ee·ət
adj. Of, made of, or the color of gold.
cenotaph
SEH··taf
n. A monument to someone who is buried somewhere else.
dinkus
DEEN·kus
n. A typographer’s mark of three spaced asterisks: * * *. Sometimes used as a section break or to indicate an omission.

Historically an asterism: .

egregore
ə·GRƏ·gore
n. A non-physical entity manifested by the collective thoughts of a group of people.
ekphrasis
EK·frə·səs
n. A detailed description of a work of visual art as a literary device.
etiolate
EE·tee·ə·layt
v. To cause a plant to grow with less chlorophyll, often by restricting the amount of light it receives.
2 To make feeble.
epistrophe
i·PIS·trə·fee
n. Repetition of a word at the end of a series of clauses or sentences.
compare anaphora
imbricate
IM·bri·kət
adj. Overlapped in a regular way, like fish scales or roof tiles.

Can also be used as a verb meaning to place in that way, pronounced IM·bri·kayt.

interpellate
in·TƏR··layt
v. To assign someone a particular identity.

Social construction of identity. The identity may not be accurate, and it may be assigned without agreement from the subject.

internecene
in·tər·NƏ·seen
adj. Conflict within a group.

This meaning was accidentally invented by Samuel Johnson in his 1755 A Dictionary of the English Language. Previously, the word meant “deadly;” it’s speculated that Johnson mistook the inter as meaning “within.”

interregnum
in··REG·nəm
n. The period between the end of a monarch’s reign and the start of the successor’s.
2 A gap or interruption in government or social structure.
lagomorph
LA··morf
n. Of the order Lagomorpha, which includes pikas, hares, and rabbits.

“I love lagomorphs, because on the one side you have sweet round bois, and on the other side you have feral wilderness prophets who have gone mad with the knowledge of the universe” —@RobotLyra (external link)

prelapsarian
pree·lap·SER·ee·ən
adj. Of the time before the Biblical Fall of Man; innocent.
quire
KWAI·ər
n. A small book, especially one made from a single piece of paper folded three times, or four pieces of paper folded once into eight leaves. Zines count.
2 Twenty four or twenty five pieces of paper; one twentieth of a ream.
3 ARCHAIC OF choir. A division of angels.
rogalian
adj. Of or pertaining to a great fire.

The only known appearances of rogal and rogalian are in Thomas Blout’s 1656 Glossographia; or a dictionary,… with the above definition.

BUT COMPARE roge, meaning a pyre.

synanthrope
SI·nan·thrope
n. An undomesticated animal that lives near / with humans and benefits from human changes to the environment.

Think pigeons, raccoons, ants.

synecdoche
·NEK··kee
n. A figure of speech where a part stands for the whole, or vice versa.

“Wheels” as a reference to an entire car.

Not pronounced SEYE··keye··DO·dee·CHO·dee (external link), although maybe it should be?

Mostly sourced from the Oxford English Dictionary, Cambridge Dictionary, and Merriam-Webster online dictionaries.

I’m preferring American English spelling and pronunciations.

The definitions are incomplete; I’m highlighting the parts I like.