Skip to content

Wondrous Words Wednesday

April 25, 2018

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!

Even though I didn’t finish THE AGE OF INNOCENCE by Edith Wharton, I did find a few words in it.

1. vicegerent – “Few things seemed to Newland Archer more awful than an offense against “Taste,” that far-off divinity of whom “Form” was the mere visible representative and vicegerent.”

A vicegerent is an administrative deputy of a king or magistrate.


2. ormolu – “Even personal experience of these facts was not always a protection from the chill that descended on one in the high-ceilinged white-walled Madison Avenue drawing room, with the pale brocaded armchairs so obviously uncovered for the occasion, and the gauze still veiling the ormolu mantel ornaments and the beautiful old carved frame of Gainsborough’s ‘Lady Angelica du Lac.'”

I’ve seen this word in THE AGE OF INNOCENCE more than once, so I think it must have been a popular feature 100 years ago when the book was written.  Ormolu means golden or gilded brass or bronze used for decorative purposes (as in mounts for furniture).


3. sacerdotal– “She said ‘reading the newspaper’ in the tone in which a Minister’s wife might have said: “Presiding at a Cabinet meeting” — not from any arrogance of mind, but because the habit of a lifetime, and the attitude of her friends and relations, had led her to consider Mr. van der Luyden’s least gesture as having an almost sacerdotal importance.

Sacerdotal means of or relating to priests or a priesthood: priestly.


What words do you want to celebrate today?

11 Comments leave one →
  1. April 25, 2018 7:19 am

    Too bad you didn’t like Age of Innocence — I have read it a couple of times, thought it was revealing about that time and the not-always likable social structure back then. I am sure I would not have liked Edith Wharton (nor she me)!

    My blog is “wordless” rather than “wordy” this Wednesday:

    best… mae at

  2. anna@herding cats & burning soup permalink
    April 25, 2018 8:15 am

    Interesting. I’d not heard of any of those before!

  3. April 25, 2018 8:52 am

    I haven’t read The Age of Innocence. I would never have guessed the first two words but I knew the last one because sacerdote is the word for priest in Italian.

  4. Patty permalink
    April 25, 2018 9:21 am

    This is why this book is so difficult to read and or finish.

  5. April 25, 2018 9:48 am

    Have heard “ormolu” but couldn’t quite pin it down. I had a vague notion on “vicegerent” but wasn’t close enough.

  6. April 25, 2018 10:36 am

    All new to me :=D

  7. April 25, 2018 11:32 am

    She may be difficult to read, but at least she gave you some good words — all new to me.

  8. April 25, 2018 12:25 pm

    When I had my interior design studio, pieces with ormolu accents were often good conversation-starters with clients.

  9. April 25, 2018 2:30 pm

    I didn’t know the first two words, Kathy. I’ll add them to my list! I read this book many years ago, but don’t remember much about it.

  10. April 25, 2018 7:19 pm

    Didn’t know any of them.

  11. bookingmama permalink
    May 5, 2018 9:39 am

    No idea on any of them but at least you got something out of your book club selection this month! 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: