Wordsmith.org: the magic of words


A.Word.A.Day

About | Media | Search | Contact  


Home

Today's Word

Subscribe

Archives



Jun 11, 2018
This week’s theme
Monosyllabic words

This week’s words
wen
skail
slue
dree
wale

wen
A picture of Oxford from 1822
Picture: John Thomas Serres, Engraving: J. Whessell, Image: Wikimedia Commons

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

Why is “monosyllabic” five syllables long? Well, no one said words had to practice what they preach. We can’t hold them accountable for their spellings any more than we can hold people on the street accountable for their names.

That said, there are many one-syllable words in the English language, even if they don’t have one-syllable meanings. This week we’ve lined them up in A.Word.A.Day to introduce them to you.

wen

PRONUNCIATION:
(wen)

MEANING:
noun:
1. A benign tumor of the skin.
2. A large overcrowded city.

ETYMOLOGY:
From Old English wen (tumor, wart). Ultimately from the Indo-European root wen- (to beat or wound), which also gave us the word wound. Earliest documented use: 1000.

NOTES:
In 1822, William Cobbett, farmer, pamphleteer, journalist, MP, and a champion of rural England, nicknamed the rapidly growing London, The Great Wen.

USAGE:
“He had a wen under his left eye like half a red grape glued to his skin.”
S.L. Farrell; A Magic of Nightfall; Daw Books; 2009.

“Port of Spain would be such another wen upon the face of God’s earth as that magnificent abomination, the city of Havanna.”
Charles Kingsley; At Last; Macmillan; 1871.

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

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
A great book should leave you with many experiences, and slightly exhausted at the end. You live several lives while reading it. -William Styron, novelist (11 Jun 1925-2006)

We need your help

Help us continue to spread the magic of words to readers everywhere

Donate

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

© 1994-2018 Wordsmith