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.



January 18th, 2016

Episode 427 of 923 episodes

Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day for January 18, 2016 is: eloquent \EL-uh-kwunt\ adjective 1 : marked by forceful and fluent expression 2 : vividly or movingly expressive or revealing Examples: Because Max is such an eloquent speaker, he was asked to give the toast at his grandfather's 75th birthday party. "The governor waxedeloquentabout growing up just a short distance away in Queens and what this part of the world meant to him." — Fred LeBrun, The Times-Union (Albany, New York), 15 Nov. 2015 Did you know? Since eloquent can have something to do with speaking, it makes sense that it comes from the Latin verb loqui, which means "to speak." Loqui is the parent of many "talkative" offspring in English. Loquacious, which means "given to fluent or excessive talk," also arose from loqui. Another loqui relative is circumlocution, a word that means someone is talking around a subject to avoid making a direct statement (circum- means "around"). And a ventriloquist is someone who makes his or her voice sound like it's coming from another source.

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