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46 Cards in this Set

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palisade (pal-uh-SADE) noun
1. A fence of stakes forming a defense.

2. A line of steep cliffs, especially along a river.

[From French palissade, Latin palus (stake).]
From Latin
palisade (pal-uh-SADE) verb tr.
To fortify with palisades.

[From French palissade, Latin palus (stake).]
From Latin
bagatelle (bag-uh-TEL) noun
1. Something unimportant.

2. A kind of pinball game in which balls are struck with a cue to send them to holes at the other end.

3. A short, light piece of verse or music.

[From French bagatelle (trifle), from Italian bagattella (trifle), possibly
from Latin baca (berry).]
From French
mulligrubs (MUL-i-grubz) noun
1. Grumpiness; colic; low spirits.

2. An ill-tempered person.

[From mulliegrums, apparently from megrims (low spirits).]
clerisy (KLER-i-see) noun
The well-educated class; the literati; the intelligentsia.

[From German Klerisei (clergy), from Medieval Latin clericia, from Late Latin clericus (cleric), from Greek klerikos
(belonging to the clergy), from Greek kleros (inheritance).]
From Greek
putsch (pooch) noun
A secretly plotted, sudden attempt to overthrow a government.

[From Swiss German Putsch (thrust, blow).]
From Swiss German
zeitgeber (TSYT-ge-buhr) noun
An environmental cue, such as light, that helps to regulate the biological clock in an organism.

[Coined by 1954 by Jürgen Aschoff (1913-1998), from German Zeit (time) + Geber (giver).]
From German
gegenschein (GAY-guhn-shyn) noun
A faint oval patch of light directly opposite the sun in the night sky, caused by reflection of sunlight by dust particles. Also known as counterglow.

[From German Gegenschein, from gegen (against) + Schein (glow).]
From German
weltschmerz (VELT-shmerts) noun
World weariness; pessimism, apathy, or sadness felt at the difference between physical reality and the ideal state.

[From German Weltschmerz, from Welt (world) + Schmerz (pain).]
From German
duodecennial (doo-uh-di-SEN-ee-uhl, dyoo-) noun
A twelfth anniversary.

[From Latin duodecennium (a period of twelve years), from duodecim (twelve) + annus (year).]
From Latin
duodecennial (doo-uh-di-SEN-ee-uhl, dyoo-) adjective
Of or pertaining to a period of twelve years.

[From Latin duodecennium (a period of twelve years), from duodecim (twelve) + annus (year).]
From Latin
duodenum (doo-uh-DEE-nuhm, doo-OD-n-uhm, dyoo-) noun
The first portion of the small intestine (so called because its length is approximately twelve fingers' breadth).

[From Medieval Latin, short for intestinum duodenum digitorum (intestine of
twelve fingers), from Latin duodeni (twelve each), from duodecim (twelve).]
From Latin
dodecagon (do-DEK-uh-gon) noun
A polygon having 12 sides and 12 angles.

[From Greek dodekagonon, from dodeka- (twelve), duo (two) + deka (ten) + -gon (angled).]
From Greek
duodecimal (doo-uh-DES-uh-muhl, dyoo-) adjective
Of or relating to the number twelve.

[From Latin duodecimus (twelfth), from duodecim (twelve), from duo (two) + decem (ten).]
From Latin
duodecimal (doo-uh-DES-uh-muhl, dyoo-) noun
A twelfth.

[From Latin duodecimus (twelfth), from duodecim (twelve), from duo (two) + decem (ten).]
From Latin
unciary (un-SEE-uh-ree) adjective
Equal to a twelfth part.

[From Latin unciarius, from uncia (a twelfth part) which is also the source of the words ounce and inch. An inch is one twelfth of a foot but what about the ounce? The original pound was the troy pound having 12 ounces.]
From Latin
Pyrrhic victory (PIR-ik VIK-tuh-ree) noun

A victory won at too great a cost.

[After Pyrrhus, king of Epirus, who suffered staggering losses in defeating the Romans.]
casus belli (KAY-suhs BEL-i, rhymes with eye, BEL-ee) noun plural casus belli
An action or event that causes or is used to justify starting a war.

[From New Latin casus belli, from Latin casus (occasion), belli, genitive of bellum (war).]
From Latin
fetial (FEE-shuhl) adjective, also fecial
Relating to declarations of war and treaties of peace.

[From Latin fetialis, a member of the Roman college of priests, who performed the rites in such matters.]
From Latin
polemology (po-luh-MOL-uh-jee) noun
The science and study of human conflict and war.

[From Greek, polemos (war) + -logy (study).]
From Greek
spoliation (spo-lee-AY-shun) noun
1. The act of pillaging and plundering.

2. Seizure of neutral ships at sea in time of war.

3. The deliberate destruction or alteration of a document.

[From Middle English, from Latin spoliation- (stem of spoliatio), from spoliatus, past participle of spoliare (to spoil).]
From Latin
Parthian shot (PAR-thee-uhn shot) noun

A hostile remark made in departing.

[After the natives of Parthia, an ancient country in southwest Asia.]
fletcher (FLECH-uhr) noun
A maker of arrows.

[From Middle English fleccher, from Old French flechier, from fleche (arrow).]
From French
bull's-eye (bulz eye) noun
1. The center of a target.

2. A direct hit.

3. A convex lens or a lantern with such a lens in it.

[Origin unknown.]
toxophilite (tok-SOF-uh-lyt) noun
One who is fond of or expert at archery.

[Coined by Roger Ascham (1515-1568), scholar and writer, as a proper name and the title of his book Toxophilus, from Greek toxon (bow) + -philos (loving).]
best gold (best gold) noun
The shot nearest the exact center of the bull's-eye.

[The centermost circle (also known as bull's-eye) in a target is yellow or gold, hence the shot nearest to it is called the best gold.]
apparatchik (uh-pah-RAH-chik) noun
Member of the (Soviet) bureaucracy; now extended to apply to any inflexible organisation man, particularly in a political party.

[From Russian apparat (apparatus, the government machine or structure)
+ chik (agent).]
From Russian
au contraire (oh kon-TRAIR) noun
On the contrary.

[From French au contraire (on the contrary).]
From French
feng shui (fung SHWAY) noun
Describing the network of intangible influences, positive and negative, that some believe to operate in a place, knowledge of which is necessary in discovering the most propitious site for putting up a building, staging an event, etc.

[From Chinese feng (wind) and shui (water).]
From Chinese
gestalt (gesh-TALT) noun
Shape or pattern; most often used in psychology to describe a theory or approach which aims to see something as a whole rather than breaking it into separate parts

[From German gestalt (form, shape).]
From German
papabile (pa-PA-bi-lay), also papable adjective
Eligible or suitable to become a pope; fitted for high office.

[From Italian papabile (worthy to be pope), from papa (pope) + -bile, equivalent to -ble (able).]
From Italian
publican (PUB-li-kuhn) noun
1. A tax collector.

2. An owner or manager of a pub or hotel.

[From Latin publicanus, from publicum (public revenue), from publicus (public), from populus (people).]
From Latin
thanatopsis (than-uh-TOP-sis) noun
A reflection upon death.

[From Greek thanatos (death) + -opsis (appearance, view).]
From Greek
impost (IM-post) noun
1. A tax or a similar mandatory payment.

2. The weight a horse must carry in a handicap race.

3. The top part of a pillar of a wall, usually projecting in the form of an ornamental molding, on which an arch rests.

[From Latin imponere (to impose), from ponere (to place).]
From Latin
anabiosis (an-uh-bi-O-sis) noun
A return to life after death or apparent death.

[From Greek anabiosis (coming back to life), from anabioun (to return to life), from ana- (back) + bio- (life).]
From Greek
capitation (kap-i-TAY-shuhn) noun
1. A counting of heads.

2. A uniform tax assessed by the head; a poll tax.

3. A fee extracted from each student.

[From Late Latin capitation- (poll tax), from caput (head).]
From Latin
belles-lettres (bel-LET-ruh) noun
Literary works valued for their aesthetic qualities rather than information or instruction.

[From French belles (fine) + lettres (letters, literature).]
From French
orihon (OR-ee-hon) noun
A book or manuscript folded like an accordion: a roll of paper inscribed on one side only, folded backwards and forwards.

[From Japanese, ori (fold), + hon (book).]
From Japanese
amphigory (AM-fi-gor-ee) noun, also amphigouri
A nonsensical piece of writing, usually in verse form, typically composed as a parody.

[From French amphigouri, of obscure origin.]
From French
conspectus (kuhn-SPEK-tuhs) noun
A general survey, synopsis, outline, or digest of something.

[From Latin conspectus, past participle of conspicere, from con- (complete)
+ spicere (to look).]
From Latin
magnum opus (MAG-num OH-puhs) noun (plural magnum opuses or magna opera)
A great work of literature, music, art, etc., especially the finest work of an individual.

[From Latin magnum, neuter of magnus (large), opus (work).]
From Latin
oniomania (O-nee-uh-MAY-nee-uh, -MAYN-yuh) noun
Compulsive shopping; excessive, uncontrollable desire to buy things.

[From Latin, from Greek xnios (for sale), from onos (price) + -mania.]
From Greek
garbology (gar-BOL-uh-jee) noun
The study of a society or culture by examining what it discards.

[From garbage (which was originally the word for offal from fowls) + -logy (study).]
onychophagia (on-i-ko-FAY-juh, -jee-uh) noun
The practice of biting one's nails.

[From Greek onycho-, from onyx (nail) + -phagia (eating).]
From Greek
philography (fi-LOG-ruh-fee) noun
The practice of collecting autographs.

[From Greek philo- (loving) + -graphy (writing).]
From Greek
theophany (thee-OF-uh-nee) noun
An appearance of a god to a person.

[From Medieval Latin theophania, from Late Greek theophaneia, from Greek theo- (god) + -phaneia (to show).]
From Greek