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vicissitude (vi-SIS-i-tood, -tyood) noun

1. A change or variation. The quality of being changeable; mutability.

2. Often vicissitudes. One of the sudden or unexpected changes or shifts often encountered in one's life, activities, or surroundings.

[Latin vicissitudo, from vicissim, in turn, probably from vices, pl. of *vix, change.]

"In Jiang's speech, he noted, `People of my age have all experienced vicissitudes of the current century.'" Weimin, Chang, Warm Talks Bring Two Nations Closer, China Daily, 21 Oct 1999.

This week's theme: words from newspapers of the world.


I cannot judge my work while I am doing it. I have to do as painters do, stand back and view it from a distance, but not too great a distance. -Blaise Pascal (1623-1662)

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