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Bete Noire

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                     *  WORD A DAY  *
                  Thursday, June 28, 2007

Fellow Logophiles,

Good morning! Here are the answers to the word scramble: 
1) lucubration, 2) detritus, 3) malapropos, 4) contemn, and 
5) equanimity.

Have you ever wondered who first coined the phrase "'Tis 
better to have loved and lost, than never to have loved at 
all"? Well, the author of this phrase is Alfred Lord 

These lines are a part of "In Memoriam," which Tennyson 
wrote after the death of his beloved friend Arthur Hallam. 
Tennyson had met Hallam in 1829, when they were both 
students at Trinity College in Cambridge. Hallam's sudden 
death in 1833 threw Tennyson into a tormented and near-
suicidal state. 

"In Memoriam" was not published until 1850, the same year 
that Tennyson was chosen poet laureate of England. Samuel 
Butler paraphrased the saying in "The Way of All Flesh" 
(1903): " 'Tis better to have loved and lost than never to 
have lost at all." 



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WORD:  bete noire   bet-NWAHR  (noun)

: Something or someone particularly detested or avoided 

SYNONYMS: * bugbear 
          * persona non grata 
          * anathema 

WORD WISE: Bete noire is French for "black beast." 

QUOTE: "Even more regrettable, as far as Dame Edna is 
concerned, is the presence of her old bete noire, the 
extravagantly disgusting Sir Les Patterson." 
--"The Dame's New Man," Daily Telegraph, April 18, 1998 


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BONUS WORD OF THE DAY:  aborning   uh-BOR-ning  (adverb)

: While being produced or born. 

Aborning is derived from a-, "in the act of" + English 
dialect borning, "birth." 


1)  futz   futs  (intransitive verb) 
    : to spend time frivolously, lazily, or aimlessly 

    Early 20th century. Probably an alteration of Yiddish 
    arumfartzen "to fool around." 

2)  gadarene   gadde reen  (adjective) 
    : rushing headlong en masse 

    Early 19th century. Via Latin from Greek Gadarenos 
    "inhabitant of Gadara," the town that was the site of 
    the herd of swine's headlong rush into the sea in 
    Matthew 8:28 in the Bible. 

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Copyright 2007 by NextEra Media. All rights reserved. 

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