Words from my reading IV

Let’s get right to it, shall we? New to me words this week:

avuncular, adj Of an uncle
page 239, A Quiet Flame by Philip Kerr
“He placed an avuncular hand on my shoulder.”

plus-fours (or plus fours), n Loose knickerbockers worn, especially formerly, for active sports
This one I’ve seen in more than one of my recent reads, and I failed to note the page number each time. Thus, no quote.

trilbies, n, plural of trilby: A man’s soft felt hat with a narrow brim and the crown deeply dented from front to back; the name derives from a 1895 play based on Du Maurier’s novel Trilby, during which one was originally worn. A trilby is similar to the chiefly American fedora, except the brim of a trilby is narrower than that on a fedora.
page 295, A Quiet Flame by Philip Kerr
“There were women with skirts slit up to their navels and men with trilbies pulled down low over their watchful eyes.”

tun, n A large cask, especially for wine, beer, or ale
page 343, A Quiet Flame by Philip Kerr
“Under the arch of the main building was a huge wooden tun that, from the bottles beside it, looked like it was filled with red wine.”

defenestrating, from the noun defenestration: A throwing out through a window
page 367, A Quiet Flame by Philip Kerr
“The colonel jerked his head at the door and, with a weary look of disappointment, like two French Catholic noblemen denied the pleasure of defenestrating a big-mouthed Huguenot, they closed it.”

chiton, n A loose garment of varying length, similar to a tunic, worn by both men and women in ancient Greece
page 384, A Quiet Flame by Philip Kerr
“That might not be the kind of reason that would satisfy a Greek in a chiton.”

gantry, n A framework that spans a distance, often moving on wheels at each end, used for carrying a traveling crane; a bridgelike framework over railroad tracks, for supporting signals or for loading
page 10, American Rust by Philipp Meyer
“A gantry and series of grinder stands for cutting tool bits, though the grinders themselves were missing and the lathes were missing their chucks and cross-feeds, anything a person could carry.”

tipple, n An apparatus for emptying coal, etc., from a mine car by tipping
page 151, American Rust by Philipp Meyer
“Shortly after that he passed through a dark mine complex with a railyard and a big coal tipple, the ground was black with it, the coal crunched underfoot.”

pruno, or prison wine, n Alcoholic liquid variously made from apples, oranges, fruit cocktail, ketchup, sugar, and possibly other ingredients, including bread
page 249 (and earlier), American Rust by Philipp Meyer
“He reached behind him and pulled out a jug of pruno and they all drank from it.”

Reviews of books cited here:
A Quiet Flame by Philip Kerr
American Rust by Philipp Meyer


10 responses to “Words from my reading IV

  1. You’ve inspired me to keep a running tally of interesting words that I find in MY reading. So far, I’ve got:
    coruscation ( n. a sudden gleam or flash of light; a striking display of brilliance or wit)

    spoor (n. a track or trail, esp. that of a wild animal pursued as game)

    hegira (n. any flight or journey to a more desirable or congenial place)


    extirpating (v. to remove or destroy totally; do away with; exterminate)

  2. Ooh, fun words, Mrs. Chili! 🙂 Glad to be of service. What book(s) are these in?

  3. Great words — there’s quite a few I didn’t know on your list. I knew “trilby,” but not where it comes from, which is super interesting.

    I like Mrs. Chili’s words too!

  4. Out of all your words I only knew two. My dad wore a trilby a long time ago.

  5. I like avuncular!

    And, of course defenestration.

  6. What, no PRUNES in that pruno? What kind of wine is that? I mean, really! That only gantry I ever heard of was called Elmer, not to be confused with the glue. That’s new one on me. My WWW post is here

  7. avuncular is a great word. sounds like what it means and is often used very pointedly.

  8. You found some great new words!

  9. These were culled from the fifth book in Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander Series; The Fiery Cross.

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