Today’s Best Word Ever is diaskeuast: editor, one who revises.

A “revisionary” noun, from Greek diaskeuastēs, from diaskeuazein, “to make ready, revise, edit.”

A superlative diaskeuast is a dichotomy of detachment and devotion:
impervious to deadline pressures but passionate—punctilious—about producing
vivid, concise, and accurate prose down to the smallest publishing detail.

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    Today’s Best Word Ever is ataraxia: calmness untouched by mental or emotional disquiet.

    Circa 1600 noun—also Anglicized as ataraxy—from Modern Latin, from Greek ataraxia, “impassiveness,” from a- + tarassein “to disturb, confuse.” 


    The first day of summer vacation the kids rose with a roar at 5:30 
    and Mom was already reaching deep within to achieve ataraxia.


    Thumbnail for version as of 10:55, 30 August 2011
    I musk be calm! I musk be calm!

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      Today’s Best Word Ever is xanthippe: an ill-tempered woman.

      A nagging noun, from Greek Xanthippē, Socrates’s shrewish wife (5th century BCE) and the mother of Lamprocles, Sophroniscus, and Menexenus, their three sons. The name Xanthippē is related to the masculine proper name Xanthippos, a compound of xanthos, “yellow” + hippos, “horse.”  First known use: 1691.

      Bobby and Bradley sat at the bar grumbling about Bonnie and Brenda:
      “Man, you always begin married life with a wife who’s as free-spirited as a hippie—but before you know it you’re debating Xanthippe. Another brewski, bro?”

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        Today’s Best Word Ever is ailurophile: a cat lover. 

        An allergy-free noun, from Greek ailouros, “cat,” + -phile, a suffix via French and Latin, from Greek philos, “loving, dear,” from philein, “to love.” First use: 1927. Another source dates ailurophile‘s origins at 1931, and pairs it with ailurophobe, 1905, the “morbid fear of cats,” from Greek ailouros + -phobia, “fear.”

        Hovering between ailurophile and ailurophobe, an entranced yet horrified Augie the Doggie watched the lively litter of kittens play with a ball of yarn.



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          Today’s Best Word Ever is xenial: relating to or constituting hospitality or relations between host and guest.

          An adjective, xen-E -al, from Greek xen-before vowels, from xeno-, the combined form of xenos, “a guest, stranger, foreigner.”

          “Expect soft, fluffy pillows and warm apple pie,” the travel writer continued. “At the Inn of the Half-Hearted Angel, xenial relations are obliging and genial.”

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            Today’s Best Word Ever is trilemma: a quandary involving the struggle to determine which one of three courses to take.

            A noun, tri + lemma,  from Latin, or Greek, tria  “three,” combined with Greek lemma “something received or taken; an argument; something taken for granted”; 1560s, first used mathematically.

            Carol could not solve her brewing latte trilemma: tall, grande, or venti? 


            Once you’ve decided, would you care for a slice of Snowy Day Bundt Cake to enjoy with your java?

            Is that here or to go?


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              Today’s Best Word Ever is mythomaniac: an extreme proclivity to exaggerate or lie.

              A bombastic New Latin adjective/noun, ca. 1909, from mythomania, Greek mythos, “speech, thought, story, myth,” + Late Latin mania, “madness, insanity.”

              “Enough about me, what do you think of me—and these photos of my mansion, my Mercedes, my mink, and my marvelous mustached man?!” boasted Mary Margaret Mythomaniac.

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                November 28, 2011:

                Today’s Best Word Ever is omphaloskepsis: contemplation of one’s navel as an aid to meditation; also inertia.

                This New Latin noun, which has straightforward as well as sarcastic connotations, derives from the Greek: omphalos, “navel,” + skepsis, from skeptesthai, “to reflect, look.” The first known use of omphaloskepsis is 1925, but it was used in the “navel-gazing” sense earlier in these forms: omphalopsychic (1892), omphalopsychite (1882).

                Mom gaped at the disheveled stack of unfinished homework on Francesca’s cluttered desk and cried, “You are an omphaloskepsis expert!”

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