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Mar 23, 2015
This week’s theme
Unusual synonyms

This week’s words
expectorate
seism
autochthon
leechdom
festinate

I'm especially good at expectorating.
“I’m especially good at expectorating.”
From Beauty and the Beast (3.5 min.)

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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

When I travel, I note that often there is more than one way to do something, and ours is not necessarily the best. Sometimes there can be two answers to a question and both can be right.

Some drive on the left, others on the right. Electrical sockets and phone outlets come in all shapes and sizes. For some, the street-level floor is the ‘ground’ floor, for others, the ‘first’.

So it is with language. Likewise with words.

This week we’ll see five words that are synonyms of everyday words. To answer those who might ask, why use another, a less-common, word when there’s already a word to describe something, I say, “Why not?”

expectorate

PRONUNCIATION:
(ik-SPEK-tuh-rayt)

MEANING:
verb tr., intr.:
1. To spit.
2. To eject by coughing.

ETYMOLOGY:
From Latin expectorare (to expel from the chest), from ex- (out) + pectus (br east). Earliest documented use: 1601.

USAGE:
“Sportswriters and talk-radio hosts may expectorate their opinions like gobs of tobacco juice.”
James Wolcott; Breakdown of Champions; Vanity Fair (New York); Apr 2013.

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

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
The successful revolutionary is a statesman, the unsuccessful one a criminal. -Erich Fromm, psychoanalyst and author (23 Mar 1900-1980)

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