Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Wondrous Words Wednesday

Wondrous Words Wednesday is a weekly meme, started by Bermudaonion where we share new (to us) words that we’ve encountered in our reading. Feel free to join in the fun.

Today's words all come from The Private Papers of the Eastern Jewel by Maureen Lindley.

I. venal ve·nal [ ve'en'l ] adjective

1. open to bribery: open to persuasion by corrupt means, especially bribery
2. corrupt: characterized by corruption
3. able to be bought: able to be obtained for a price

Here's how it's used in the book:

Money comes and goes but memories can be coloured for ever by one venal act.

II. damson [ˈdæmzən] noun

1. a small rosaceous tree, Prunus domestica instititia (or P. instititia), cultivated for its blue-black edible plumlike fruit and probably derived from the bullace

2. the fruit of this tree

This is what it looks like:

And this is how it's used in the book:

I bought satin shoes with little heels, and jade earrings that danced above the collars of my dresses and turned my eyes to the colour of damsons.

III. ju·ni·per [ jo'onipər ] (plural ju·ni·pers) noun


1. evergreen plant bearing cones resembling berries: an evergreen tree or bush with small purple cones resembling berries that are used in cooking and yield juniper oil.

Here's how it's used in the book:

By the glass door that led to the veranda, a small painted chest housed not only sake and vodka, but also the newly imported gin, that looked like water, smelled of juniper and tasted of sloe.