Half of the words I know, I know because I read them in a book. I read at least two Jane Austen novels before deciding to look up what exactly a 'carriage' is. A lot of things made more sense afterwards. Although not every single word is crucial, sometimes understanding a word adds a lot of extra meaning.
Here is a list of some of the best new words I've learned from The Lives of Others.
- Bathos: (in literature) an effect of anticlimax created by an unintentional lapse in mood from the sublime to the trivial or ridiculous.
- Intransigence: a stubborn refusal to change your views.
- Naxalbari: a village in West Bengal, India, and the site of a left-wing poor peasant uprising in 1967.
- Naxalite: name for Communist guerrilla groups in India. Derived from Naxalbari.
- Concertina: to collapse, to compress
- Vivarium: an enclosure for keeping animals under semi-natural conditions for observation
- Axiomatic: self-evident, unquestionable
- Gherao: a protest in which workers prevent employers from leaving work until demands are met.
- Nadir: the lowest, or most unsuccessful point in a situation
- Detumesce: to lose one's sexual arousal
- Logorrhoea: a tendency to extreme loquacity
- Dyspepsia: indigestion
- Factotum: an employee who does all kinds of work
- Salubrious: healthy
- Scion: a young shoot or twig of a plant
- Uxorious: having/showing a great fondness for one's wife
- Fulcrum: a thing that plays an essential role in an activity, event or situation
- Suppuration: discharge of pus
- Senescence: process of deterioration with age
- Dendritic: having a branched form resembling a tree
- Apparatchick: a member of a Communist Party apparat.
So, those are the new words I learned. I do think I suffer from logorrhoea sometimes, so it's good to now have a name for that affliction. I think I might do this for more of my reads, if they have interesting words!
Have you read a book that introduced you to a whole new vocabulary?