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Word of the Day Word of the Day

glabrous \GLAY-bruhs\, adjective:

Smooth; having a surface without hairs, projections, or any unevenness.

This species has a bluish-tinged body completely covered in white flecking in the typical species, though completely glabrous green variants are also seen without any of the body flecking.
— Kevin G. Belmonte, "The woolly Astrophytums", The Philippine Star, June 6, 2009

We offered to the rebarbative Senator Patrick Leahy’s demands on us amused resistance and the promise to buy the glabrous old boy a proper hairpiece.
— R Emmett Tyrrell Jr., "Jumpin’ Jim Jehoshaphat!", The American Spectator, July 1, 2001

Glabrous is from Latin glaber, "smooth, bald." Entry and Pronunciation for glabrous

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Word of the Day – Avoirdupois

Thursday May 28, 2009

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avoirdupois \av-uhr-duh-POIZ; AV-uhr-duh-poiz\  noun:
1. Avoirdupois weight, a system of weights based on a pound containing 16 ounces or 7,000 grains (453.59 grams).
2. Weight; heaviness; as, a person of much avoirdupois.

Claydon . . . was happy to admit that he has shed some avoirdupois.
— Mel Webb, “Claydon’s loss leads to net gain”, Times (London), February 18, 2000

Yet until middle age and avoirdupois overtook her, Mary was no slouch.
— John Updike, “How to Milk a Millionaire”, New York Times, March 29, 1987

Tired of putting on and taking off the same five pounds? Don’t delay, buy this book today — and watch yourself shed both respectability and surplus avoirdupois!
— David Galef, “J. Faust’s Guide to Power’ And Other Self-Help Classics”, New York Times, December 18, 1994

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Avoirdupois is from Middle English avoir de pois, “goods sold by weight,” from Old French aveir de peis, literally “goods of weight,” from aveir, “property, goods” (from aveir, “to have,” from Latin habere, “to have, to hold, to possess property”) + de, “from” (from the Latin) + peis, “weight,” from Latin pensum, “weight.” Entry and Pronunciation for avoirdupois

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