Wednesday 4 April 2012

Wondrous Words Wednesday 4/4/12

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.  

Again proving that new words can come from anywhere. Recently on a trip to Sydney we were passing the time in the car using the Family Quiz Book. 

1. Drey (Noun)

What is a squirrel's nest called?

Clearly the answer is drey. I had never given any thought as to where squirrels might live. Not unsurprising, given that we don't have squirrels in Australia. Although I do love seeing them whilst on holidays. Trying to guess this in the car was actually quite hilarious. Even when given the D-R-E we had no idea what the word was, and nearly went through the alphabet trying all combinations for the final letter. I hope I shan't forget drey before I have a chance to use it sometime. 

Picture credit

2. Eyrie (Noun)

Which large bird builds an eyrie as a nest?

We needed help with the answer to this one too....

i) The nest of an eagle or another bird of prey, built in a high inaccessible place.
ii) The brood of a bird of prey, especially an eagle. 
iii) Any high isolated position or place. The Free Dictionary. 

I'm moderately sure that I've heard of the broader definition used there, but clearly hadn't come across the more eagle specific usage, although I immediately knew what was meant. 

Reading my friend's blog I came across this

3. Espundia (Noun)

Is a term for mucocutaneous (mucous membranes ie mouth and nose; and skin) leishmaniasis. A nasty disease caused by protozoan parasites (Leishmania) transmitted by sandfly bites, that erupts weeks to months after the bite.  That is the cutaneous form, which may progress into the three other forms
 i) mucocutaneous  ie espundia
ii) diffuse cutaneous
iii) visceral (affecting the internal organs), the beloved kala-azar remembered by every medical student as a cause of massive splenomegaly (enlarged spleen). Typically it's the first cause that they remember too.

Google pictures if you want to, but be warned it's gross. I knew I hated sandflies. Now I hate them that little bit more. 


bermudaonion said...

There is a drey in a tree in our backyard and I've never called it by its proper name. You're lucky not to have squirrels - they can be cute to watch, but they are a menace.

Annie said...

We have squirrels in France but I never saw their nest !
Thanks to you, not posting pictures for espundia...

Anonymous said...

We also have a very large drey in our yard, never knew it was called that.

Margot said...

I haven't seen many dreys here in northern California. What I do see a lot of is mistletoe. It's evidently a tree disease but it looks similar to a drey.

Suko said...

Drey is a great word. I hope I remember it, for Words with Friends!

Alyce said...

I knew Eyrie only because we have a lot of bird nest platforms in the area for large birds of prey (in Oregon).

Lisa said...

I was familiar with eyrie, but it turns out I have several dreys in the yard!

Anonymous said...

Well, I did google espundia. A good reason to avoid sandflies. A friend of mine was badly bitten by sandflies a few years back- she became really quite feverish and agitated by them. At least she didn't get espundia, though