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Jul 22, 2016
This week’s theme
Words related to politics and elections

This week’s words
shermanesque
carpetbagger
logrolling
dog whistle
suffrage

Suffragists Annie Kenney and Christabel Pankhurst
Annie Kenney & Christabel Pankhurst, Suffragists
Photo: Wikimedia

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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

suffrage

PRONUNCIATION:
(SUF-rij)

MEANING:
noun: The right to vote; also, the exercise of such a right.

ETYMOLOGY:
From French suffrage, from Latin suffragium (voting tablet, right to vote). Ultimately from the Indo-European root bhreg- (to break), which also gave us break, breach, fraction, fragile, fractal, infringe, irrefragable, and fractious. Suffrage? Because a broken piece of tile was used as a ballot in the past. Earliest documented use: 1380.

USAGE:
“Victoria Claflin Woodhull, a leader in the women’s suffrage movement, was the first woman to run for the US presidency, though she couldn’t even vote for herself on election day, Nov 5, 1872.”
Simon Carswell; She is a Tough Lady. She is All of Our Hero; Irish Times (Dublin); Jun 9, 2016.

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

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
Give me your tired, your poor, / Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, / The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. / Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me, / I lift my lamp beside the golden door! -Emma Lazarus, poet and playwright (22 Jul 1849-1887) [from a poem written to raise funds for building the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty]

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