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.



March 3rd, 2016

Episode 467 of 923 episodes

Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day for March 3, 2016 is: camaraderie \kahm-RAH-duh-ree\ noun : a spirit of friendly good-fellowship Examples: The sense of camaraderie among colleagues in the sales department is the main reason Julie enjoys coming to work each day. "Today, visits combine adventure, relaxation and camaraderie. The latter is hard to come by in winter when snow and cold isolate people in this already desolate part of the state." — Paul Post, The New York Times, 2 Feb. 2016 Did you know? Camaraderie made its first appearance in English in the middle of the 19th century. It comes from camarade, the French word whose Middle French ancestor was also the source for our word comrade. In Middle French, camarade was used to mean "roommate," "companion," or "a group sleeping in one room." It derived by way of Old Spanish from the Late Latin camera, or camara, meaning "chamber." We also have the word comradery, which means the same thing as camaraderie but did not take the same etymological route as its synonym. That word, formed by attaching the -ry suffix (as found in wizardry and citizenry) to comrade, didn't appear in English until almost 40 years after camaraderie.

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