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



Dec 17, 2015
This week’s theme
Food as metaphor

This week’s words
bouillabaisse
cherry-pick
rechauffe
saccharine
farrago

Ingredient list for Fiber One Raisin Bran Clusters
Ingredient list for Fiber One Raisin Bran Clusters

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

saccharine

PRONUNCIATION:
(SAK-uh-rin, -REEN, -ruhn, -ryn)

MEANING:
adjective: Excessively sweet, sentimental, or ingratiating.

ETYMOLOGY:
From Latin saccharum (sugar), from Greek sakkharon, from Sanskrit sarkara (gravel, sugar). Earliest documented use: 1674.

NOTES:
The name of the synthetic sweetening compound, saccharin, is derived from the same Latin word as today’s term. The compound was first produced in 1879, but the usage of the word saccharine goes much earlier. For example, Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote in 1841:
“One might find argument for optimism in the abundant flow of this saccharine element of pleasure in every suburb and extremity of the good world.”

USAGE:
“The most preposterous notion that Homo sapiens has ever dreamed up is that the Lord God of Creation, Shaper and Ruler of all the Universes, wants the saccharine adoration of His creatures, can be swayed by their prayers, and becomes petulant if He does not receive this flattery. Yet this absurd fantasy, without a shred of evidence to bolster it, pays all the expenses of the oldest, largest, and least productive industry in all history.”
Robert A. Heinlein; Time Enough for Love; Putnam; 1973.

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

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
Contentment is, after all, simply refined indolence. -Thomas Chandler Haliburton, author, judge, and politician (17 Dec 1796-1865)

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