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

Wondrous Words Wednesday
New To Me Words

Image of an open book showing words, with a small purple sprig led across the pages - used for the meme Wondrous Words Wednesday

Wondrous Words Wednesday …

Is a weekly meme where we share new (to us) words that we have encountered in our reading and elsewhere

It’s a bit of a ‘mix ‘n match’ post from  me this week

Image of an open book showing words, with a small purple sprig led across the pages - used for the meme Wondrous Words Wednesday

First up is another of those ‘what?’ words I have encountered as answers to clues in my daily on-line crossword…

1. TIAN(in this case the word was used with reference to the second definition)

A dish of sliced vegetables cooked in olive oil and then layered in a dish and baked au gratin.

An earthenware vessel of Provence used both for cooking and serving. The classic vessel is a truncated cone, flattened at the base and flaring outward to a wide rim. It is traditionally glazed on the inside, and unglazed on the outside. It is shallower than the cassole, the earthenware vessel characteristic of the Camargue and Languedoc. The shape has become less definitive, though the earthenware body remains key.

Tiān is one of the oldest Chinese terms for heaven and a key concept in Chinese mythology, philosophy, and religion.

Image of an open book showing words, with a small purple sprig led across the pages - used for the meme Wondrous Words Wednesday

Next is a word I have always been familiar with and used, but have never known its exact definition


A liveried manservant or footman.

If you refer to someone as a flunky, you disapprove of the fact that they associate themselves with someone who is powerful and carry out small, unimportant jobs for them in the hope of being rewarded.

Image of an open book showing words, with a small purple sprig led across the pages - used for the meme Wondrous Words Wednesday

And finally this time, I have a whole slew of words which were forwarded to me by fellow reader and puzzle-worker, Kelly, from a book she recently read. I’ll just share one or two words, every now and again, so as not to bombard you with them!

Cover image of the book 'In Cold Blood' by author Truman Capote

“One of the killers kept a notebook of ‘new words'”


 To plunder or lay waste to; prey upon; pillage; ravage. 

Depredate derives primarily from the Latin verb praedari, meaning “to plunder,” an ancestor to our words “predator” and “prey.” First appearing in English in the 17th century, the word most commonly appears in contexts relating to nature and ecology, where it is often used to describe the methodical, almost automatic destruction of life.


Image of an open book showing words, with a small purple sprig led across the pages - used for the meme Wondrous Words Wednesday

That’s three new to me words this time

How many of them do you recognise?

Wondrous Words Wednesday Meme Button by Mareli @ Elza Reads - New Host in January 2021

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 Mareli, over at ‘Elza Reads

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 Mareli and the rest of us, all love to read your comments as well, so that we can visit and share your own words of the week, or simply say Hi!

Written by

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 Angie,

      I guess that the cooking word was really playing to your strength, however my culinary skills are much more basic (which is why I love checking out the delicious looking dishes and recipes you feature – one day I might actually pluck up the courage to try one of them 🙂 ) and I had no idea what a tian was!

      Thanks for stopping by and I’m pleased I managed to stump you on a couple of words at least! 🙂

  • Aww, I didn’t realise that I could have posted my wondrous words post today, and I published another review. I will schedule it for next week instead.

    Depredate is interesting. In Romanian is a similar word with the Latin praedari, but with that “de” in front I might not have guessed the meaning.
    Flunky sounds funny, but I don’t think I will remember it.
    Tian has two very different definitions, fascinating.

    • Hi Anca,

      I had other review commitments early on yesterday, so I posted my WWW late last night and just about scraped the deadline. I believe that Mareli is only hosting this meme once a fortnight, so I have my next post prepared for 2 weeks time.

      Actually, the link stays live beyond Wednesday, so you can still post and link up if you wanted to!

      It is always interesting when a word has two completely diverse definitions, especially if I happen to forget to say in which context it has been used in the book or article I have been reading!

      I wondered if you would recognise ‘tian’ from your cookery blog. It was from there that I came to be following ‘Angies recipes’, so between the two of you, I should definitely be able to improve my culinary skills! 🙂

      • I looked tian, as in the dish, because I assumed it would be like Moussaka, but it is different and so I will put it on my to-cook list. 🙂

        • I shall look forward to that post! Some of the online pictures of the various interpretations of the dish are so colourful and whilst there is cheese with many of them, it is quite understated, which would be good for me as DG hates melted cheese. I could always do a half and half with different amounts of cheese, as I love the stuff 🙂

  • I’ve heard (and used) the word “flunky” all my life, but didn’t realize it actually meant “a liveried manservant or footman”. And while I’ve used it as stated here, it’s never been with a sense of disapproval.

    Thanks for the mention. I’m not sure what it says about all of us who like keeping track of new words that a famous killer enjoyed doing the same!

    • Hi Kelly,

      I shall be featuring from your list of words for some time to come, as there were quite a lot of them – I hope that is okay with you?

      Like yourself, I have always used the word ‘flunky’, but obviously erroneously all this time, as I have certainly never directed it at a liveried manservant or footman, and I have never come across it in any of the historical novels I have featured and read!

      I just found this definition in one of the more obscure dictionaries and this sounds as though it is more akin to the context I have used the word in…

      “a person who does unimportant work or who has few or no important responsibilities and shows too much respect toward his or her employer”

      Oh Dear! Now I feel even worse, as this is quite a snide use of the word, don’t you think?

      Thanks for stopping by 🙂

    • Hi Naida,

      I only knew of the word ‘flunky’ in its second definition and had no idea about the liveried manservant. I’m surprised I haven’t come across it in any of the historical fiction I’ve read, as most of those books have manservants or footmen in them!

      I like the sound of the vegetable ‘tian’ and some of the pictures from various online cooking sites, looked so good!

      Thanks for stopping by and I hope that all is well with you 🙂

    • Hi Mareli and Elza,

      Flunky is definitely a word I though I might have come across when reading my historical romance novels, as they quite often feature footmen in uniform. Perhaps I have and I just don’t remember it!!

      Thanks for stopping by and also for being the perfect meme host. Have a good week 🙂

    • Hi Nikki,

      There are some amazing images of vegetarian tian online, which even as a non-vegetarian, had me drooling and the actual physical tian dish itself is an amazing shape, great for taking from oven to table!

      Thanks for taking the time to stop by and I’m pleased that I offered up a couple of new words for your enjoyment.

      All is well here in Somerset, as I hope it is for you and your family 🙂

Written by Yvonne