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Jul 24, 2019
This week’s theme
Toponyms

This week’s words
solecism
Manchurian candidate
Dunkirk
Siberia
ultima Thule

Dunkirk
British troops escaping from Dunkirk in lifeboats (1940)

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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

Dunkirk

PRONUNCIATION:
(DUN-kurk)

MEANING:
noun:
1. A desperate evacuation or retreat.
2. A crisis requiring drastic measures to avoid total disaster.

ETYMOLOGY:
After Dunkirk (in French, Dunkerque), a seaport and town in northern France. In World War II, it was the site of evacuation of more than 330,000 Allied troops by sea while under German fire during May-June 1940. Earliest documented use: 1941.

USAGE:
“We are in the worst situation we’ve been in since I’ve been at the club. This is our Dunkirk.”
Colin Tattum; Football; Birmingham Mail (UK); Dec 20, 2005.

See more usage examples of Dunkirk in Vocabulary.com’s dictionary.

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
So I accept these awards on behalf of the cake bakers and all of those other women who can do some things quite as important, if not more important, than flying, as well as in the name of women flying today. -Amelia Earhart (24 Jul 1897-1937)

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