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Sharing our love for authors, and the stories they are inspired to tell.

Wondrous Words Wednesday … 09/11/2011

‘Wondrous Words Wednesday’ is a weekly meme where we share new (to us) words that we have encountered in our reading.

It is hosted by Kathy, over at BermudaOnion’sWeblog. You can either stop by and leave a link to your own ‘mystery’ words of the week, or just browse the eclectic mix of words that others have discovered, there is always a great selection.

Don’t forget that Kathy and the rest of us, all love to read your comments  as well!!


My words this week come from ‘Eulogy’s Secret’, by Grace Elliot

Available From Amazon

Greed, prejudice and a stolen identity…

In the four weeks since her guardian’s death, Eulogy Foster has lost everything. She travels to London seeking the help of Lord Lucien Devlin, the estranged brother who doesn’t know she exists. But Lord Devlin turns her away and alone on the streets, Eulogy is attacked, robbed and thrown onto the mercy of a passing stranger.

Jack Huntley – bitter, cynical and betrayed in love -believes women are devious, scheming creatures and not to be trusted. So when one night he saves a naive young woman from rape, little does he suspect how life is about to change. Despite his growing attraction to Miss Foster, Jack has a problem: Eulogy Foster has a secret and he can’t trust her.

As Eulogy learns the haunting story of her mother’s past, she knows she will only marry for true love. Deeply drawn to Jack Huntley, she needs him to confess his love before she shares the secret of her birth. Caught in a deadlock, with neither able to confess their true feelings, events take a sinister turn as it becomes clear someone wants Eulogy Foster dead and will stop at nothing to achieve it.


1. ….  THE TON

“Even if Devlin acknowledged her THE TON was more than bloodlines, but about fitting in, influence, manners and prestige ..”

THE TON … The ton is a term commonly used to refer to Britain’s high society during the Georgian era, especially the Regency and reign of George IV. It comes from the French word meaning “taste” or “everything that is fashionable” and is pronounced the same way as tone ( in French). The full phrase is le bon ton, meaning good manners or “in the fashionable mode” – characteristics held as ideal by the British ton.


2. …. SHALLOP and TILT

“A gilt SHALLOP, as long as ten men are tall, with a covered TILT  and pennants fluttering from the silk canopy.”

SHALLOP …  A pleasure barge is a flat bottomed, slow moving boat used for leisure.  Many places where canals or rivers play a prominent role have developed pleasure barges for conducting religious ceremonies or waterborne festivities, or for viewing scenery.

TILT … A tilt being a covered section or primitive cabin for sheltering passengers.

Shallop for ceremonial use on the River Thames at Kingston upon Thames



“Jack led the way up to the PIANO NOBILE and stopped outside the double doors.”

PIANO NOBILE … (Italian, “noble floor” or “noble level”) Piano nobile is the main floor of a house, containing the reception rooms. Usually higher than the other floors, it is most commonly on the first floor, and has one or more shallower storeys above. As the most important storey of the building it is given greater prominence on the façade, often being slightly higher than the other storeys, and including decorative windows with elaborate surrounds.

At 18th century Kedleston Hall the piano nobile is placed above a rusticated ground floor, and reached by an external staircase. The uppermost windows indicate that the upper floor is of far lower status.


There are just so many great words in this book, that there will be a second installment next week, so that I can share more of my ‘finds’ with you all …. until then Happy Reading and have a great week!


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I can’t remember a time, even as a child, when I haven’t been passionate about books and reading.
I began blogging, when I realised just how many other people out there shared my passion for the written word and I have been continually amazed at the wealth of books that are available and the amount of great new friends I have made, from literally 'The Four Corners Of The World'.

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    • Hi Kathy,

      It makes me laugh how all these words, which we claim as British and use as if they were our exclusive property, are mostly of European origin, mainly French and Italian!

      It would be interesting to hear just how you propose to introduce ‘The Ton’ into a conversation, I would certainly like to be a fly on the wall!

    • Hi Annie,

      I wondered if you would be stopping by today, when you realised that all of my words were of European extraction.

      I recognised the phrase ‘Le Bon Ton’, although I wasn’t too sure of its exact meaning and my schoolgirl French comes into play as I recognise the word ‘etage’.

      I was completely at a loss as to the word ‘Chaloupe’, although I have to say that it sounds much nicer than ‘Shallop’

      Good to talk with you

  • I enjoyed all your new words. It does indeed sound like an excellent story. The Ton is the only word I knew. I used to read a lot of regency romances and the ton seems to be appropriate to them all.

    • Hi Margot,

      Thanks for visiting and leaving comment, it is always appreciated.

      We talk about the ‘upper class’ society of today, but we really have no idea of what it is like to have a truly class conscious society, if we are to believe even half of what we read about past times.

      All the jostling for position at court, the lavish coming out parties where daughters were put on display like so much meat in the market, and forced into loveless marriages purely for monetary, land and title gain for the families … can you imagine that happening on such a large scale today?

      Morals didn’t come into things anywhere, any more than they seem to today.

    • Hi Naomi,

      Good to see you back on the blogging circuit after your recent spell of ill health and I was sorry to hear the sad news about your long time friend Gil Cates.

      We do have some very strange words and phrases to grapple with, when you start reading these historical romances, however the only consolation is that we imported most of them from either the French or Italian languages, so we can blame them in part for the difficulty we have in understanding many of them (just joking folks!)

    • Hi Louise,

      It was the other way round with me, I had an idea of what ‘The Ton’ was, although maybe not its exact definition, but was surprised when I came across the fact that it was of French origin and was originally ‘Le Bon Ton’.

      Like you say, it is strange that just a small gap in the overall picture can lead us to believe that we don’t know something when in reality we do, and of course vice versa.

      For me, reading can highlight gaping great holes in my knowledge, not just gaps, so thank goodness for the on-line dictionary, which makes things so much easier to check, as you go along!

      Thanks for stopping by, I appreciate your comment.

    • Hi JNCL,

      Thanks for visiting and leaving comment, I value and look forward to them all. I loved your WWW post this week, it gave me real food for thought and was very interesting.

      It’s funny how we come across certain words again and again and tend to ‘make up’ in our own minds roughly what we think the word or phrase means and just ‘go with it’, rather than take a few minutes to look it up, I do it all the time. Sometimes when we then come across the actual meaning, we are either pleasantly surprised and ‘knew it all along’, or are genuinely mortified to have believed the wrong thing for all this time!!

      The human mind is a wonderful thing, but not nearly as good as our imagination LOL

Written by Yvonne