Capital High School

Word of the Day

February 2015


2/2           archipelago(ahr kuh PEL uh goh)(noun) a large body of water containing many islands; a group of islands.

                  The islands in the Hawaiian archipelago make up the fiftieth state in the United States.

2/3           bibelot(BEE buh low)(noun) a small object of beauty or rarity.

                  Many bibelots found in sunken treasure are made of priceless gems and precious metals.

2/4           burlesque(bur LESK)(noun) exaggerated imitation.

                  Before movies were invented, Vaudeville actors were famous for their burlesque skits.

2/5           Byzantine(BIZ un teen)(adjective) difficult to understand and complicated; characterized by the architectural style of the Byzantine empire.

                  Byzantine architecture is characterized by spires, domes, arches, and minarets.

2/6           conflagration(kahn fluh GRAY shun)(noun) a large destructive fire.

                  They say that a cow named Elsie was responsible for the conflagration that occurred in Chicago in the early 1900’s.

2/9           denizen(DEN I zun)(noun) inhabitant.

                  Sharks are often called denizens of the deep, even though their habitat is typically in shallow waters near the shore.

2/10         eloquent(EL oh kwent)(adjective) extremely expressive in speech, writing, or movement.

                  The dancers glided eloquently across the stage with practiced, graceful movements.

2/11         foment(foh MENT)(verb) to instigate.

                  Agitators were sent into the crowd to foment discontent.

2/12         gauche(GOHSH)(adjective) unpolished; unmannerly; unsophisticated.

                  Nancy’s gauche behavior shocked everyone at the senator’s reception.

2/13         hackneyed(HAK need)(adjective) overused; cliché.

                  A strong writer tries to avoid hackneyed expressions.


2/17         idiosyncrasy(id dee oh SINK ruh see)(noun) a behavioral quirk.

                  Her worst idiosyncrasy involved repeating back everything that was said to her.

2/18         juxtapose(JUK stuh pohz)(verb) to place side by side.

                  Although Hamlet is a tragedy, several moments of comedy are juxtaposed with the tearful scenes.

2/19         magnanimous(mag NAN uh mus)(adjective) generous; noble in spirit.

                  The mayoral candidate was magnanimous in defeat, telling his constituents to support his opponent.

2/20         metaphysics(met uh FIZ iks)(noun) the study of what exists, the study of ultimate reality.

                  Sometimes doctrine becomes so intertwined with older metaphysics that they are nearly impossible to separate.

2/23         noisome(NOY sum)(adjective) having an unpleasant odor; harmful or injurious to health.

When I opened the garbage can, the odor was so noisome I thought I might suffocate before I could get the lid back on.

2/24         prestigious(pres TEE jus)(adjective) highly esteemed.

                  Since I was just promoted to a prestigious position within my company, I now have a fancy title and a spacious office.

2/25         regurgitate(rih GURJ ih tate)(verb) to cause to serge or rush back; to vomit.

                  Many mother birds feed their young by regurgitating food.

2/26         svelte(sfelt)(adjective) slim; slender.

                  The svelte waitress was able to move easily between the crowded tables.

2/27         valedictory(val uh KIK tuh ree)(adjective/noun) bidding goodbye; farewell address.

                  Reilly was chosen to deliver the valedictory address for his graduating class.