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.
November 6th, 2015
Episode 372 of 848 episodes
Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day for November 06, 2015 is: Lucullan \loo-KULL-un\ adjective : lavish, luxurious Examples: "Two millennia ago, taverns were liberally represented in Pompeii. Today, there's just one place: Autogrill cafeteria near the Forum. Not exactly Lucullan feasting, but they do sell passable panini." Michelle Locke, The Miami Herald, 25 Sept. 2015 "For most, gaining a few easily shed pounds is a small price to pay for a week or two of Lucullan bliss." Kevin Doyle, The Condé Nast Traveler, November 1994 Did you know? Lucullan echoes the name of Roman general Lucius Licinius Lucullus. The general had a distinguished military career (including the defeat of Mithradates VI Eupator, king of Pontus, at Cabira in 72 B.C.E.), but he is best remembered for the splendor of his opulent retirement. Lucullus established a reputation for magnificent banquets, at which he wined and dined the leading poets, artists, and philosophers of his time. His feasts were sufficiently extravagant to establish a lasting place for his name (in adjective form) as a synonym of lavish in the English lexicon.