Thursday 8 November 2012

Wondrous Words Wednesday 7/11/12

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.  

Recently I read the wonderful The Graveyard Book. Naturally, with Neil Gaiman there were some fabulous new words.

1. Revenants (Noun)

"Your duty, ma'am, is to the graveyard, and to the commonality of those who form this population of discarnate spirits, revenants and such-like wights, and your duty thus is to return the creature as soon as possible to its natural home- which is not here."

i) One that returns after a lengthy absence.
ii) One who returns after death. The Free Dictionary. 

2. Wights (Noun)

Obsolete. A living being, a creature. The Free Dictionary. 

3. Rill (Noun)

She stopped beside a broken clay building like an enormous beehive, built beside a small rill of water that came bubbling out of the desert rock, splashed down into a tiny pool and was gone again. 

i) A small brook; a rivulet. 
ii) A long narrow straight valley on the moon's surface. The Free Dictionary. 

3. Snakestone (Noun)

"Snakestone?" he said, to himself, not to the boy.

Animal bones which are widely used and promoted as a treatment for snakebite it Africa, South America and Asia. Wiki

4. Skirling (Verb)

Bod wondered if he could hear it better because he was wearing the flower- he could make out a beat, like distant drums, and a skirling, hesitant melody that made him want to pick up his heels and march in time to the sound. 

To produce a high, shrill, wailing tone. Used of bagpipes. The Free Dictionary. 

5. Gloaming (Noun)

The rain had stopped and the cloudy gloaming had become true twilight. 

Twilight. Dusk. The Free Dictionary. 

Picture source

6. Ichor (Noun)

"Can you imagine," interrupted the Bishop of Bath and Wells, "how fine a drink the black ichor that collects in a leaden coffin can be?"

i) Greek Mythology. The rarefied fluid said to run in the veins of the gods. 
ii) Pathology. A watery, acrid discharge from a wound or ulcer. The Free Dictionary

I don't think I've ever seen two such contradictory meanings!


bermudaonion said...

Of all those words, the only one I'm familiar with is gloaming. I think skirling sound just like its meaning.

Anonymous said...

All new words for me, very interesting.

Book of Secrets said...

I've always thought of revenants (in the supernatural sense) as sophisticated zombies, at least that's how they were portrayed in a book I read this year. :) The other words are new to me. Here’s MINE.

Margot said...

Good group of new words Louise. The one that caught my eye is skirling. It sounds like it's meaning and I actually like that sound.

Swan Pond said...

Don't you go roaming in the gloaming regularly? Get on those walking boots now, or you could just check the song on youtube!