palaver /puh-LAV-ər/. noun and verb. A conference, dispute or contest (originally, primarily West African). Tedious, time consuming or idle talk or other activity. Loud or confused talk. Flattery. From Portuguese palavra (talk), from Latin parabola (a parable, words, speech). See also: bunk, bunkum, hokum, cajolery, wheedling, jabbering.[Read more…]
oppilate /OP-i-layt/. verb. To block, obstruct, stop up. Most of often pores or bowels. Noun: oppilation; adjective: oppilation. To remove such an obstruction is to deoppilate. From Latin ob (in the way, against) + pīlāre (to ram down, pack closely).[Read more…]
spoliate. verb. To plunder, rob or deprive. Legally, altering a document and making it invalid. In wartime, the authorized seizure of neutral vessels. A less common form of despoil. From Latin spolium (spoil).
cantillate /KAN-tə-layt/. verb. To recite or chant musically, usually a religious text. From Latin antillāre (to sing softly), from cantāre (to sing). See also: cantor and cantata.
cincture /SEENK-chər/. noun or verb. A girdle or a belt. More generally, something that encircles or surrounds. From Latin cinctura(girdle), from cingere (to gird, surround).
satisfice. verb. A blend of satisfy and suffice, coined by Nobel Prize winning economist Herbert A. Simon in his 1956 article ‘Rational Choice and the Structure of the Environment’ to describe the behavior of pursuing the minimum satisfactory outcome. Satisficing is the opposite of maximizing or optimizing. Also, a Northern English/Scottish synonym for satisfy.