Wiktionary:Word of the day/Archive/2020/February

2020
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Word of the day
for February 1
coronavirus n
  1. (virology) A member of the family Coronaviridae, comprising viruses which infect animals and human beings, and the genome of which consists of a single strand of RNA.

  An outbreak of a viral infection which started in Wuhan in Hubei, China, in December 2019 is currently active. It is caused by a novel coronavirus designated as 2019-nCoV.

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Word of the day
for February 2
acrostic n (also attributively)
  1. A poem or other text in which certain letters, often the first in each line, spell out a name or message.
  2. A poem in Hebrew in which successive lines or verses start with consecutive letters of the alphabet.
  3. A kind of word puzzle, the solution of which forms an anagram of a quotation, and their initials often forming the name of its author.
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Word of the day
for February 3
cocky adj
  1. Overly confident; arrogant and boastful.

cocky n

  1. (chiefly Britain, Ireland, colloquial, dated) Used as a term of endearment, originally for a person of either sex, but later primarily for a man.

[...]

  1. (chiefly Australia, New Zealand, informal) A (familiar name for a) cockatoo.
  2. (chiefly Australia, New Zealand, informal, also attributively) Short for cockatoo farmer (small-scale farmer); (by extension) any farmer or owner of rural land.

cocky v

  1. (intransitive, chiefly Australia, informal, historical) To operate a small-scale farm.
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Word of the day
for February 4
remission n
  1. A pardon of a sin; (chiefly historical, also figuratively) the forgiveness of an offence, or relinquishment of a (legal) claim or a debt.
  2. A lessening of amount due, as in either money or work, or intensity of a thing.
    1. (law) A reduction or cancellation of the penalty for a criminal offence; in particular, the reduction of a prison sentence as a recognition of the prisoner's good behaviour.
    2. (medicine) An abatement or lessening of the manifestations of a disease; a period where the symptoms of a disease are absent.
  3. An act of remitting, returning, or sending back.
    1. (law) A referral of a case back to another (especially a lower or inferior) court of law; a remand, a remittal.

  Today is World Cancer Day, which is recognized by the United Nations to raise awareness of cancer and to encourage its prevention, detection, and treatment.

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Word of the day
for February 7
prosewise adv
  1. In terms of prose, as opposed to poetry.
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Word of the day
for February 10
pay gap n
  1. The difference in salaries between one group and another.
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Word of the day
for February 11
radium n
  1. The chemical element (symbol Ra) with an atomic number of 88. It is a soft, shiny and silvery radioactive alkaline earth metal.
  2. (textiles, dated) A type of cloth woven from silk or synthetic yarn, often with a shiny appearance.

  Today is designated by the United Nations as the International Day of Women and Girls in Science to recognize the critical role that women and girls play in science and technology communities. Radium was discovered by Marie Skłodowska Curie and her husband Pierre in 1898. In 1903 she became the first woman to be awarded a Nobel Prize; she, Pierre Curie, and Henri Becquerel received the Nobel Prize in Physics for their research into radiation.

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Word of the day
for February 12
I'll be a monkey's uncle phrase
  1. (idiomatic) Often preceded by well: expressing complete surprise or disbelief.

  English biologist, geologist, and naturalist Charles Darwin, who is best known for his contributions towards the science of evolution, was born on this day in 1809.

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Word of the day
for February 13
shock stall n
  1. (aviation) A stall (sudden loss of lift) caused when the airflow over an aircraft's wings is disturbed by shock waves that occurs at a specific Mach number when the aircraft is accelerating to transonic speeds.

  Former United States Air Force officer and test pilot Chuck Yeager, who on 14 October 1947 became the first pilot confirmed to have exceeded the speed of sound in level flight, was born on this day in 1923.

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Word of the day
for February 14
hypocorism n (linguistics)
  1. (countable) A term of endearment; a hypocoristic, a pet name.
  2. (uncountable) The formation of terms of endearment or pet names.
  3. (uncountable, rare) Baby talk, such as bow-wow for dog and choo-choo for train.

  Happy Valentine’s Day from all of us at the English Wiktionary!

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Word of the day
for February 15
insult v
  1. (transitive) To be insensitive, insolent, or rude to (somebody); to affront or demean (someone).
  2. (transitive, also figuratively, obsolete) To assail, assault, or attack; (specifically, military) to carry out an assault, attack, or onset without preparation.
  3. (intransitive, obsolete) To behave in an obnoxious and superior manner (against or over someone).
  4. (intransitive, obsolete, rare) To leap or trample upon.

insult n

  1. (uncountable) Action or form of speech deliberately intended to be rude; (countable) a particular act or statement having this effect.
  2. (countable) Something that causes offence (for example, by being of an unacceptable quality).
  3. (countable, medicine) Something causing disease or injury to the body or bodily processes; the injury so caused.
  4. (countable, also figuratively, archaic) An assault or attack; (specifically, military, obsolete) an assault, attack, or onset carried out without preparation.
  5. (countable, obsolete) An act of leaping upon.
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Word of the day
for February 17
boomerang child n
  1. (originally US, informal) Synonym of boomerang kid (a young adult who has moved back into the parental home after a period of independence)

  Today, the third Monday of February in 2020, is celebrated as Family Day in some parts of Canada.

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Word of the day
for February 18
stalkily adv
  1. In a stalky manner.
    1. Like, or as if made up of, one or several stalks or sticks; with a tall and thin appearance; lankily.
    2. As if covertly following or hunting a person; sneakily, surreptitiously.
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Word of the day
for February 19
foot chase n
  1. A chase or pursuit that takes place on foot (rather than, for example, in vehicles).
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Word of the day
for February 20
womannap v
  1. (transitive, informal, rare) To abduct or kidnap a woman.

  Patty Hearst, a granddaughter of the American publishing magnate William Randolph Hearst, was born on this day in 1954. In 1974 she was abducted by a left-wing terrorist group, the Symbionese Liberation Army, but later convicted of serious crimes committed with members of the group. She denied willingly participating in those activities, and was subsequently granted a presidential pardon.

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Word of the day
for February 21
matrilingual adj
  1. (rare) Pertaining to one's mother tongue.

  Today is International Mother Language Day, which is recognized by the United Nations to promote linguistic and cultural diversity and multilingualism.

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Word of the day
for February 22
semaphore n
  1. Any equipment used for visual signalling by means of flags, lights, or mechanically moving arms which are used to represent letters of the alphabet, or words.
  2. (also figuratively) A visual system for transmitting information using the above equipment; or (by extension) by means of two flags held one in each hand, using an alphabetic and numeric code based on the position of the signaller's arms; flag semaphore.
  3. (computing) A bit, token, fragment of code, or some other mechanism which is used to restrict access to a shared function or device to a single process at a time, or to synchronize and coordinate events in different processes.
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Word of the day
for February 23
habitual adj
  1. Of or relating to a habit; established as a habit; performed over and over again; recurrent, recurring.
  2. Regular or usual.
  3. Of a person or thing: engaging in some behaviour as a habit or regularly.
  4. (grammar) Pertaining to an action performed customarily, ordinarily, or usually.
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Word of the day
for February 25
non-U adj
  1. (chiefly Britain, colloquial, dated) Not U; not characteristic of the upper classes, particularly regarding language.
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