Wondrous Words Wednesday is a fabulous weekly meme hosted by Bermuda Onion, where we share new (to us) words that we’ve encountered in our weekly reading.
I've recently read Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's The Hound of the Baskervilles. It was a great read, and already provided one Wondrous Words post. Conan Doyle had quite the vocabulary, and it was over 100 years ago, so some words are naturally less commonly used now. I knew that I had come across some of them before, but knew that I needed some reminding of what they meant.
1. Gainsaid (verb)
"Know then that in the time of the Great Rebellion (the history of which by the learned Lord Clarendon I most earnestly commend to your attention) this Manor of Baskerville was held by Hugo of that name, nor can it be gainsaid that he was a most wild, profane, and godless man.
To declare false, deny. To oppose especially by contradiction. The Free Dictionary.
2. Trenchers (noun)
Then , as it would seem, he became as one that hath a devil, for, rushing down the stairs into the dining-hall, he sprang upon the great table, flagons and trenchers flying before him, and he cried aloud before all the company that he would that very night render his body and soul to the Powers of Evil if he might but overtake the wench.
A wooden board or platter on which food is served. The Free Dictionary.
Interestingly wiki tells us that the original trenchers were bits of stale bread used as a plate to serve food. There is another usage of trencher- a machine that digs trenches, which is much more prosaic and uninteresting.
3. Crenellated (adjective)
From this central block rose the twin towers, ancient, crenellated, and pierced with many loopholes.
Having battlements. Indented. Notched.
4. Tors (noun)
We found a short valley between rugged tors which led to an open, grassy space flecked over with the white cotton grass.
A high rock or pile of rocks on top of a hill. A rocky peak or hill. The Free Dictionary.