Words from my reading

A few new to me words this week:

cabinet puddingcabinet pudding, n Traditional English molded pudding made from bread or sponge cake, often with glacé cherries, served with custard
page 16, Scoop by Evelyn Waugh
“They ate parsley soup, whiting, roast veal, cabinet pudding; they drank whisky-and-soda.”

chryselephantine, adj Made of, or overlaid with, gold and ivory, as some ancient Greek statues
page 31, Scoop by Evelyn Waugh
“The sole stationary objects were a chryselephantine effigy of Lord Copper in coronation robes, rising above the throng, on a polygonal malachite pedestal, and a concierge, also more than life size, who sat in a plate-glass enclosure, like a fish in an aquarium, and gazed at the agitated multitude with fishy, supercilious eyes.”

gamboge, n A gum resin obtained from a tropical Asian tree of the Saint Johnswort family, used as a yellow pigment and as a cathartic
page 48, Scoop by Evelyn Waugh
“A psychologist, hired from Cambridge, had planned the decorations — magenta and gamboge; colours which — it had been demonstrated by experiments on poultry and mice — conduce to a mood of dignified gaiety.”

pantechnicon, n Originally, a bazaar where all kinds of things were sold; a warehouse; a furniture van
page 61, Scoop by Evelyn Waugh
“His luggage, which followed the taxi in a small pantechnicon, made him a prominent figure at the office of the Air Line.”

ulster, n A long, loose, heavy overcoat, especially one with a belt, originally made of Irish frieze [named after Ulster, a former province of Ireland, divided in 1920, with six of its counties forming Northern Ireland and the other three forming a province of the Republic of Ireland]
page 72, Scoop by Evelyn Waugh
“One was heavily enveloped in a sand-coloured ulster; a check cap was pulled on his eyes and his collar was fastened high against the blast of the engines.”

douanier, n An officer of French Customs
page 74, Scoop by Evelyn Waugh
“It was one of those rare occasions when the humdrum life of the douanier is exalted from the tedious traffic in vegetable silks and subversive literature, to realms of adventure; such an occasion as might have inspired the jungle scenes of Rousseau.”

argot, n The specialized vocabulary and idioms of those in the same work, way of life, etc., as the language used by computer hackers, slang
page 75, Scoop by Evelyn Waugh
“Opposite him, at the table to which he was directed, sat a middle-aged man, at the moment engaged in a homily to the waiter in fluent and apparently telling argot.”
I knew I should have known this one.

squireens, pl n A small landowner, petty squire
page 105, Scoop by Evelyn Waugh
“An inhospitable race of squireens cultivate the highlands and pass their days in the perfect leisure which those peoples alone enjoy who are untroubled by the speculative or artistic itch.”

exiguous, adj Scanty, little, small, meager
page 123, Scoop by Evelyn Waugh
“But it had been an exiguous living.”

demotic, adj Of the people, popular; designating or of a simplified system of ancient Egyptian writing
page 241, Scoop by Evelyn Waugh
“He crouched and bounded and skipped, slamming and volleying; now spanning the net, now five yards back, now flicking the ball from below his knees, now rocketing high among the electric lights; keeping up all the while a bright, bantering conversation in demotic Greek with Mr. Popotakis.”

Earlier installments of this feature (more great words!).

Reviews of books cited here:
Scoop by Evelyn Waugh

What new words have you found lately?


9 responses to “Words from my reading

  1. So the question is – did you make that cabinet pudding up there? I’ll be impressed if you did.

    • Ha! No. Some of the descriptions I found online made it sound pretty much like bread pudding, which my husband loves, but which I roundly dislike.

  2. Scoop has some great words in it. Without seeing the way it was used, I would have guessed that argot had something to do with metal – boy, was I off with that one.

  3. I love Cabinet Pudding its more often sponge cake and I know of an Ulster coat but the other words are new to me too. Thanks

  4. My goodness! What a marvelous array of words! I have a vision of you having to read that book with a dictionary at one elbow. But they’re all great.

    My own single word this week is at Bookishgal.

  5. Your words make this book sound yummy. I like the phrase “a mood of dignified gaiety.” The picture of he cabinet pudding is the best definition of the week!

  6. Ooh, interesting – it looks like “gamboge” is actually a corruption of “Cambodge”, the French word for Cambodia – which would make sense, as it looks like the gamboge tree is common in Cambodia.

  7. I am sure you will love at my estore , just clicks away

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