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.



September 1st, 2016

Episode 634 of 681 episodes

Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day for September 1, 2016 is: oenophile \EE-nuh-fyle\ noun : a lover or connoisseur of wine Examples: Serious oenophiles will not be impressed with this particular wine, but it should be up to the standards of less-discriminating consumers. "Founded in 1992, New Orleans Wine and Food Experience has definitely earned its place as an event thatoenophiles,gourmets and any combination thereof mark on their to-do list each year." — Sue Strachan, The Times-Picayune (New Orleans, Louisiana), 28 May 2016 Did you know? "It has become quite a common proverb that in wine there is truth," wrote the 1st-century A.D. Roman scholar, Pliny the Elder. The truth about the word wine is that it goes back to Latin vinum, but it is also a distant relative of the Greek word for wine, which is oinos. Indeed, Latin borrowed from the Greek to create a combining form that means "wine," oeno-. Modern French speakers combined oeno- with -phile (Greek for "lover of") to create oenophile before we adopted it from them in the mid-1800s. Oenophiles are sure to know oenology (now more often spelled enology) as the science of wine making and oenologist (now more often enologist) for one versed in oenology.