Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Words for Wednesday

Having just finished Sense and Sensibility, I once again remember why I love Jane Austen so much.  You get lost in the language, the prose! 

When I re-read this classic, it was with a purpose as I am writing a sequel for NaNoWriMo, so I wanted to see if there were details that I could include.  Miss Austen never really talked about clothing or even how a person looked.  Her characters are based on their actions and words.  And words are also another wonderful thing about her books.

It was wonderful reading the book on a Kindle, as I was free to highlight and underline and make notations without mucking up my beautiful copy.  I was also able to use the dictionary function. When I have read these before, I would try to take the word in context and move on.  With my Kindle, if there is a word that I am not too sure of, I can look it up right then and there!  Fabulous Feature!

Here are a few words that I looked up.  
It is interesting how language was used 200 years ago!

cavil – verb: to raise irritating and trivial objections; find fault with unnecessarily
ebullition – noun: a seething or overflowing, as of passion or feeling; outburst.
éclat – noun:1. brilliance of success, reputation, etc.: the éclat of a great achievement.   2. showy or elaborate display: a performance of great éclat.  3. acclamation; acclaim.
effusion – noun: 1.  the act of effusing or pouring forth.  2.  something that is effused.  3. an unrestrained expression, as of feelings
epicurism – noun: indulgences  or habits
exigence noun:  the need, demand, or requirement intrinsic to a circumstance, condition, etc
huswifes – noun: a case of sewing materials
importunity – noun: the state or quality of being importunate;  persistence in solicitation.
improvident – adjective:   1.  not provident;  lacking foresight; incautious; unwary.  2.  neglecting to provide for future needs.
imputed – adjective:  estimated to have a certain cash value, although no money has been received or credited.
lief – adverb: gladly, willingly
militate – verb: to have a substantial effect; weigh heavily
philippic – noun: any speech or discourse of bitter denunciation.
preferment – noun: 1.  the act of preferring.   2. the state of being preferred.  3.  advancement or promotion, especially in the church. 4. a position or office affording social or pecuniary advancement.
prodigious – adjective:  1. extraordinary in size, amount, extent, degree, force, etc.: a prodigious research grant.  2. wonderful or marvelous: a prodigious feat.  3. abnormal; monstrous.
sagaciously – adjective: having or showing acute mental discernment and keen practical sense; shrewd
sedulously – adjective: 1. diligent in application or attention; persevering; assiduous.  2.  persistently or carefully maintained

I hope you have learned a few words to work in to your vocabulary!  Some of these I already knew, but loved the way she used them in the story.  Enjoy!


  1. Looks like you're moving right on along with NaNoWriMo this year! I was just too busy to get it done this year, so passed. I have also passed to you the One Lovely Blog award.

  2. Love your list of hardly used words. (Well, at least hardly used anymore.) Funny thing is I've come across many these words in my reading not only of Austen, but, believe it or not, my reading of Rex Stout's Nero Wolfe books.

  3. Congrats on winning NaNoWriMo! I just love Sense and Sensibility. I just listened to it on audio this month, too. Didn't get into the sequel I was reading, but it was nice to visit the Dashwoods again.

  4. Thanks for teaching me a few new words! :-)


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