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Wondrous Words Wednesday

May 23, 2012

Wondrous Words Wednesday is a weekly meme where you can share new words that you’ve encountered or spotlight words you love.  Feel free to get creative!   If you want to play along, grab the button, write a post and come back and add your link to Mr. Linky!

My first word this week is from Beach House Memories by Mary Alice Monroe.

1. panicle – “Now it was fall and they were tall and amber, their long, dangling panicles catching the wind and sending tawny seeds out to colonize the dunes.”

In this case, panicle means a pyramidal loosely branched flower cluster.


My second word comes from Between the Lines by Jodi Picoult and Samantha Van Leer.

2. portcullis – “He tugs me forward, and as if by magic, the metal portcullis rises and four heralds trumpet my arrival.”

Because of the context and the prefix, I thought portcullis had something to do with a door, but I looked it up to be sure.  A portcullis is a grating of iron hung over the gateway of a fortified place and lowered between grooves to prevent passage.


What words do you want to celebrate today?

22 Comments leave one →
  1. kaye permalink
    May 23, 2012 6:56 am

    I like the word panicle. Not that it could easily be slipped into conversation.

  2. May 23, 2012 7:00 am

    I was totally off on what I thought panicle meant. Great words.

  3. May 23, 2012 7:23 am

    Lovely words. Architectural words appeal to me but I can never remember them.

  4. May 23, 2012 7:26 am

    I know portcullis is connected to medieval castles, but I always mix it up with drawbridge. It should be easy to remember which one is the gate (“port”) and which is the bridge (ahem, “bridge”), but somehow it always escapes me…

  5. May 23, 2012 8:02 am

    I’ve been away for three weeks and am just catching up on everyone’s blogs.
    Panicle is new to me but I plan on using it when talking about gardens to friends.
    Portcullis – I’ve seen it but never really knew what it meant.
    Thanks for these!

  6. May 23, 2012 8:09 am

    I love reading this feature,each week, but I don’t think I’m using more words ha ha.

  7. May 23, 2012 8:31 am

    I’ve come across portcullis a few times in recent years and have finally remembered it. Panicle is new to me too, I guessed it might be drapy things like a willow, but googled some images to get a better idea. I recognise the shape but never thought of it having a name!

  8. May 23, 2012 8:50 am

    I like these words. They are new to me. I’m in the middle of copy-editing and the editor is choosing and replacing different word choices here and there. Now, I wonder what this author’s copy-editor thought of her rare word choices. 🙂

  9. Beth Hoffman permalink
    May 23, 2012 9:00 am

    You stumped me with “portcullis” … great words, Kathy!

  10. Patty permalink
    May 23, 2012 9:23 am

    Sadly…I have no cool new words to celebrate today…so I will celebrate yours!

  11. May 23, 2012 10:34 am

    I know I’ve heard portcullis before, but I can’t remember where…

    Panicle is a neat word.

  12. May 23, 2012 11:15 am

    I learned two new words again today.

  13. May 23, 2012 11:33 am

    Excellent words this week! I’d love to read The Beach House or Beach House Memories.

  14. May 23, 2012 11:40 am

    I never would have guessed the meaning to panicle.

  15. May 23, 2012 12:34 pm

    Both of your words seem elegant. The first, panicle, paints such a lovely picture.

  16. May 23, 2012 1:23 pm

    So I have read about the 2nd one, but I had it wrong

  17. May 23, 2012 1:52 pm

    Apparently I didn’t know what portcullis means, even though I thought I did.

  18. May 23, 2012 3:32 pm

    Didn’t know either. I didn’t find any words in my current read that I didn’t know.

  19. bookingmama permalink
    May 23, 2012 6:23 pm

    I think I might have featured portcullis one time for WWW

  20. May 23, 2012 8:16 pm

    Great new words for me. I’ll have to try to use them.

  21. zibilee permalink
    May 24, 2012 9:25 am

    I thought I knew what a portcullis was as well, but obviously not! I love the words that you bring to me every Wednesday. They expand my vocabulary so much!

  22. Staci@LifeintheThumb permalink
    May 26, 2012 6:02 pm

    I did know #2 but I would fluster my words just trying to remember it to use it one day!!

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