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Word of the Week: Onomatopoeia, Turgid and Flail

Language is a living thing. No matter how many times we say it, it never gets any less true—language does resemble a living thing. It grows and changes, adapting to new circumstances, new words, new ways to use old words, and new combinations of letters and meaning. 

Word of the Week: Onomatopoeia

How to say it: 

 \ ˌä-nə-ˌmä-tə-ˈpē-ə

What it means: 

  1. The naming of a thing or action by a vocal imitation of the sound associated with it (such as buzz, hiss)

2.  The use of words whose sound suggests the sense

Examples of  Onomatopoeia in a Sentence

Donald, on the other hand, began imitating Gua’s barks and onomatopoeia, which may have been one reason the experiment ended in just six months.

Reading his writing can be kind of like taking a psychedelic — a literary onomatopoeia.

All words which were spontaneously acquired seemed to be instances of onomatopoeia.

In comic books, when you see someone with a gun, you know it’s only going off when you read the onomatopoeias.

Word of the Week: Turgid

How to say it: 

tur-jid ]

What it means: 


  1. swollen; distended; tumid.
  2. inflated, overblown, or pompous; bombastic:

Examples of Turgid in a Sentence

It is also now part of a turgid, boiling debate over police use of force, one that overlaps with America’s sharp political divide.

Some of it gets rather turgid, even given the remarkable ability of the participants to recreate exact bits of dialogue.

Why not go for the polar opposite of a turgid straight white guy?

Smith faxed a turgid apologia over to Bullock on Sunday, a mere three weeks after her relationship with James came to light.

Word of the Week: Flail

How to say it: 

\ ˈflāl \  

What it means: 


  1. an instrument for threshing grain, consisting of a staff or handle to one end of which is attached a freely swinging stick or bar.

2. a similar instrument used as a weapon of war.

verb (used with or without object)

3. to beat or swing with or as if with a flail.

Examples of Abstain in a Sentence

He begins to flail and exhaust himself before submerging for good.

The younger boy has gone under the river, and the girl continues to flail in the older boy’s arms.

My wife, at least, enjoys watching me flail about on our elliptical.

He is going to have to work hard not to flail around aimlessly, following the lead of congressional Democrats.

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