Here’s my second installment of Words from My Reading! Some of these words were at least somewhat familiar to me when I read them, but they still seemed like good enough words to look up (and include here):
novitiates, plural n The period or state of being a novice
page 13, Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese
“On the day they were to sail, all the novitiates rode from the convent in a caravan of cycle-rickshaws to the harbor to send off their two sisters.”
qat, or khat, n A plant of the staff-tree family, found in Africa and Arabia; the fresh leaf is chewed for its stimulating effects or used in tea.
I was familiar with this word because of Scrabble — at certain points I’ve known all of the Q words that didn’t require a U, but I didn’t know the definition.
page 68, Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese
“‘And you get us back in the air very soon, … otherwise, you will not only be a eunuch … but I will personally petition the Emperor to make sure that even a job as a camel driver, let alone flying khat, will be much too good for you.'”
prognathic, adj Having the jaws projecting beyond the upper face
page 139, Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese
“The big fellow with the prognathic jaw shed his fraying coat; his shorter companion pulled off his tattered sweater.”
pellucid, adj Transparent or translucent, clear; easy to understand, clear and simple in style
page 233, Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese
“There was a quality to this pellucid first light and the vivid colors that made it impossible to imagine trouble.”
Note: The page numbers included cited here are the pages of the respective quotes in my advance copy. I verified the quote content in the final version, but I didn’t adjust the page numbers. Thus, the page numbers listed here may differ from that in the final edition of each book.
tweeny, n A housemaid, especially a scullery maid: now historical
page 2, Birds of a Feather by Jacqueline Winspear
“They had made it possible for the former tweeny maid to gain admission to Girton College, Cambridge.”
dekko, n A look, a glance
page 48, Birds of a Feather by Jacqueline Winspear
“So, I was standin’ outside, taking a dekko at the premises, when up she comes in ‘er car.”
Eccles cakes, n A small, round cake filled with currants and made from puff pastry with butter and topped with demerara sugar
page 62, Birds of a Feather by Jacqueline Winspear
“She bobbed a curtsey and left the table, returning a moment later with a plate containing sliced Hovis bread with butter and jam, several iced fancy-cakes and two Eccles cakes.”