Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day


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Build your vocabulary with Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day! Each day a Merriam-Webster editor offers insight into a fascinating new word -- explaining its meaning, current use, and little-known details about its origin.



May 27th, 2016

Episode 537 of 923 episodes

Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day for May 27, 2016 is: aureate \OR-ee-ut\ adjective 1 : of a golden color or brilliance 2 : marked by grandiloquent and rhetorical style Examples: The poems display the writer's mastery of both colloquial and aureate diction. "… the sunlight burned upon his medal, giving him anaureate, convincing—but false—appearance." — David Ebershoff, Pasadena, 2003 Did you know? Aureate is among several adjectives in English pertaining to gold that derive from the Latin name for the metal, aurum. While its relatives auriferous and auric are more likely to appear in scientific contexts to describe substances containing or made from gold (or Au, to use its chemical symbol), aureate has tended to have a more literary allure since it was first used in English in the early 15th century. Over time, the word's use was extended from "golden" to "resplendent," and it finally lost some of its luster as it came to mean "grandiloquent."

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