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A.Word.A.Day--fractious

Pronunciation RealAudio

fractious (FRAK-shuhs) adjective

1. Irritable; cranky.

2. Unruly.

[From Middle English fraccioun, from Late Latin fraction-, stem of fractio (act of breaking), from Latin fractus, past participle of Latin frangere (to break). Ultimately from Indo-European root bhreg- (to break) that's also the progenitor of words such as break, breach, fraction, and fragile.]

Today's word in Visual Thesaurus 3 (New).

"Filling the streets from curb to curb, the normally fractious Lebanese set aside political and religious differences to unite in an unprecedented outpouring of anger at Syrian meddling in their affairs." Michael Matza; Lebanese Unite For Ex-leader's Farewell; The Philadelphia Inquirer; Feb 17, 2005.

"President Bush welcomed the fractious members of the National Governors Association to the White House yesterday morning." Dan Froomkin; Bush vs. the Governors; Washington Post; Mar 1, 2005.

"I love mankind. It's the people I can't stand." Do you ever find yourself repeating these words of cartoonist Charles Schulz? Maybe you just happen to be around persons described in this week's AWAD. We have all been somewhere when almost everyone around seems less than charming. But remember, just like the fingers of a hand, it takes all kinds to make this world.

-Anu Garg garg AT wordsmith.org

X-Bonus

And none will hear the postman's knock / Without a quickening of the heart. / For who can bear to feel himself forgotten? -W.H. Auden, poet (1907-1973)

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