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Wondrous Words Wednesday

July 15, 2015

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!

I found two new words in Fun Home by Alison Bechdel.

1. humectant – “And while I acknowledge the absurdity of claiming a connection to that mythologized flashpoint. . . might not a lingering vibration, a quantum particle of rebellion, still have hung in the humectant air?”

The air here is very humectant this time of year – humectant means moist.


2. deracinate – “My deracination was kindly abetted by various friends at college.”

Deracinate has several different meanings but, in this case, I think the author means to remove or separate from a native environment or culture.


What words do you want to celebrate today?

20 Comments leave one →
  1. July 15, 2015 8:58 am

    Both were new to me. The air here is very humectant most of the year.

  2. readerbuzz permalink
    July 15, 2015 9:02 am

    When I listened to an audiobook based on journals of sailors during the 1870’s, I was amazed at the vocabulary of the sailors. Wow. It would be interesting to compare the journals of sailors of today….

  3. July 15, 2015 9:15 am

    0 for 2.

  4. Beth Hoffman permalink
    July 15, 2015 10:09 am

    I’ve known the meaning of humectant for eons, but you stumped me with deracinate!

  5. July 15, 2015 10:17 am

    Did not know those

  6. July 15, 2015 11:06 am

    Curious why she wouldn’t just use humid. 😉

  7. July 15, 2015 11:32 am

    humectant I’ve seen and could figure out, but deracinate is completely new to me.

  8. July 15, 2015 12:12 pm

    Like most, deracinate was new to me. I am familiar with humectant, but I think in a medical sense. Not sure though, but I knew what it meant. A strange use of the word in the sentence, I think.

  9. July 15, 2015 12:20 pm

    It could be the author always talks this way, but to me it seemed like she was throwing in those big words just for the fun of it. Both new to me.

  10. July 15, 2015 12:30 pm

    Hah, obviously you’ve never had to buy humectants for your face, like some of us less fortunate people! LOL

  11. July 15, 2015 12:41 pm

    Hi Kathy,

    Both words this week are new to me, although as humectant is so like humid, I could probably have worked that one out!

    Our UK weather is not generally quite as humid as it is right now, although thankfully it does look set to break very soon. 100% humidity, as it was last night, is a rarity and one which I can well do without!

    This probably isn’t a book for me, as I don’t really read memoirs. Also I am wondering if the entire book is couched in such effusive language and if so, is this the author’s usual style of expressing herself, or simply done for effect in the book; as she is an artist who is not familiar to me?

    Thanks for sharing and hosting 🙂


  12. July 15, 2015 1:35 pm

    didn’t know either of them, thanks.

  13. bookingmama permalink
    July 15, 2015 3:07 pm

    I knew both of them … for once. The first because of hair products!

  14. July 15, 2015 3:31 pm

    Both new for me today.

  15. July 15, 2015 3:35 pm

    I’m with bookingmama – wasn’t there a shampoo decades ago called “Humectress”? Deracinate new for me. Thanks!

  16. July 15, 2015 4:17 pm

    Love some new words, but new to me. I’ve had to look up two words in the first 50 pages of Go Set a Watchman. It’s interesting that perhaps those words or references would have been better understood 50+ years ago. I don’t know. I’m keeping a list.

  17. Patty permalink
    July 15, 2015 6:04 pm

    Those are doozies!

  18. July 15, 2015 7:56 pm

    Ah, that’s why I know humectant- from hair products! Deracinate had me stumped. I heard about Fun Home from the Tony Awards- looking forward to reading your thoughts on this memoir.

  19. July 15, 2015 11:40 pm

    Both are new to me! Agree with Trish, though – humid seems a better word to use than humectant!

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