More Words I Never Knew Existed!


Living in eastern Massachusetts, I (along with thousands of others) read The Boston Globe newspaper and its magazine section every Sunday. There is always at least one interesting–sometimes really tough–crossword puzzle to solve, and sometimes I don’t even know the word once I have filled in the squares. Talk about humbling . . .

This is the fourth of a random series of those words that I didn’t recognize, and I wonder if you know any of them. Remember, you have the entire word to work with; I had to fill in letters to make a word that didn’t look right even when it turned out to be so!

Try matching the word with its definition below, then check the end of the post for the answers.

Adamite      a group of 1,000 things

Arriviste      a writer of poems

Avulse         a kiln for drying hops, malt, or tobacco

Chiliad         to cut off or tear

Fleer            to offer for debate

Oast            a human being

Odist           a taunting look

Propound   an upstart; a newcomer

So, how do you think you did? Remember, even when I got the squares in the crossword puzzle filled in, I realized the answer meant nothing to me! I had never seen or imagined any of these words.

So, for your learning pleasure, here are the answers:

Adamite: a human being
Arriviste: an upstart; a newcomer
Avulse: to cut off or tear
Chiliad: a group of 1,000 things
Fleer: a taunting look
Oast: a kiln for drying hops, malt, or tobacco
Odist: a writer of poems or odes
Propound: to put forth for debate

Now, don’t you feel smarter? I honestly cannot imagine seeing these in any writing I would read or using them in anything I would write. But it’s interesting to know they exist!