This blog is for everyone who uses words.

The ordinary-sized words are for everyone, but the big ones are especially for children.

Wednesday, 13 May 2020

Nuts and Bolts: seeds of inspiration.

How big is your vocabulary? Rather large, I would suspect, as you're here. Playing in The Word Den is certainly improving mine.

So: how would you describe the surface of a seed?

Or, for that matter, the surface of a louses's shin?

Here are a few possible answers:

(Sorry about the formatting: this is the best I can get it.)

Harris1970Plate1.jpg  Harris1970Plate2.jpg

Fig. 1, Substrigulate. Fig. 2, Finely Strigulate. Fig. 3, Substrigulate to Finely Strigulate. Fig. 4, Strigate or Costulate. Fig. 5, Strigate. Fig. 6, Strigate or Costulate.   Fig. 7, Costulate. Fig. 8, Costate. Fig. 9, Costate. Fig. 10, Porcate. Fig. 11, Broadly Strigate (or Tranversely Carinate) and Axially Sulcate. Fig. 12, Strigate-Rugose

...and that's only a few of the possible descriptions from R A Harris's magnificent 1979 Glossary of Surface Sculpturing, which goes on to speak of all sorts of surfaces from the Coriarious-Punctate (where cracks are an artifact of coating) to the Obscurely Variolate (which looks sort of scaly as far as I can see).

I don't know about you, but I feel as if my vocabulary has just shrunk to about a twelfth of its actual size.

Word To Use Today: errmm...strigulate? The Latin word striga means a bristle, and is connected to the word for stubble, as in corn.

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