Wordsmith.org: the magic of words


A.Word.A.Day

About Us | What's New | Search | Site Map | Contact Us  


Home

Today's Word

Subscribe

Archives



Nov 30, 2015
This week’s theme
Illustrated words

This week’s words
gramarye
quacksalver
viridity
yobbery
xenophile

gramarye
Illustration: Leah Palmer Preiss

Bookmark and Share Facebook Twitter Digg MySpace Bookmark and Share
A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

A picture is worth a thousand words, they say, but in the case of the artist Leah Palmer Preiss’s illustrations it’s worth a million, or more. As in previous years, I gave her five words and she used the gramarye of her colors to make a painting illustrating each word as you’ll see this week.

Also, this year, Leah has completed painting words from all 26 letters of the alphabet. Look for them at the end of the week. Reach her at (curiouser AT mindspring.com) or at her website.

gramarye

PRONUNCIATION:
(GRAM-uh-ree)

MEANING:
noun: Occult learning; magic.

ETYMOLOGY:
From Old French gramaire (grammar, book of magic), from Greek gramma (letter). Ultimately from the Indo-European root gerbh- (to scratch), which also gave us crab, crayfish, carve, crawl, grammar, program, graphite, glamor, anagram, paraph, and graffiti. Earliest documented use: 1320.

USAGE:
“There is naught of the power of gramarye in you. If there were, you would know it.”
Cecilia Dart-Thornton; The Lady of the Sorrows; Pan Macmillan; 2003.

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
An old miser kept a tame jackdaw, that used to steal pieces of money, and hide them in a hole, which a cat observing, asked, "Why he would hoard up those round shining things that he could make no use of?" "Why," said the jackdaw, "my master has a whole chestful, and makes no more use of them than I do." -Jonathan Swift, satirist (30 Nov 1667-1745)

A.Word.A.Day by email:

Subscribe

"The most welcomed, most enduring piece of daily mass e-mail in cyberspace."

The New York Times

Subscriber Services
Awards | Stats | Links | Privacy Policy
Contribute | Advertise

© 1994-2017 Wordsmith