I’ve bumped into yean, a novel word, in the serendipitous way that study of a foreign language affords. The word is classed as ‘Archaic.’ Of course it is. Another recent discovery of mine, objurgate, is’ Rare.’ I wonder if I inhabit a superannuated mental space clogged with spent words. Should I hang out more on social media where the fast and furious lingo lives?
Here’s where yean surfaced:
Rem. c. There are some feminine adjectives of the form [fuƹlā], not superlatives, without any corresponding masculines; as [‘untā] female, feminine, [ḥublā] pregnant, [rubbā] which has recently yeaned (of a ewe or she-goat).(Wright, A Grammar of the Arabic Language, p. 184)
Yean means to give birth to a lamb or a kid.
I had an irreverent uncle, branded Buzz, a classic middle child who was born to ranch and died broke, but unbroken. Buzz swore that the priest conducting the only Catholic mass he ever witnessed intoned “something about a game of dominos.” He (Buzz) would pass audible gas in mixed company, adopt a studious frown and murmur, “Thoughts and prayers.”
Buzz never ranched sheep nor goats; he was a cattleman. It will come as no surprise that he celebrated the arrival of each of his three children by announcing that his wife had calved. For no good reason but true to form, Buzz has the last word in this divagation.
(c) 2022 JMN — EthicalDative. All rights reserved
A nice post Jim. If you haven’t read this delightful book by Pip Williams I reckon you’d love it: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/49354511-the-dictionary-of-lost-words
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Greetings, Sue. Thanks for the link. I’m going to acknowledge it first, then go take a look. Regards — Jim
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