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Seeking cool words of the month

Here's a chance for all you polyglots to chime in! Simple reply to this post to contribute a potential Cool Word of the Month, and let me know why you think it's cool. This month, I will pick one from among the proposed words.

Edit, 01:00 CST Sun 05 Mar 2006 - I knew I forgot someone!
Lá breithe mhaith agat, thaleias_spirit!




Feb. 19th, 2006 01:40 pm (UTC)
a) tremendously useful once you know it
b) a delightful concept involving unity and worlds of marble
c) a straight shot from the greeks -- it's exactly the word you'd have predicted. all etymology flows into one.
d) fun to say
e) c) seems almost too good to be true -- it is! coleridge coined the word.

from http://www.willamette.edu/~blong/SpellersDiary/411430.html:

f you really want to use a pretentious-sounding term, try esemplastic. Derived from Greek words meaning "into" and "one" and "mold," and coined by Coleridge in 1817, the word means "having the function of molding into unity; unifying." The picture derived from the word is of someone, probably a poet, taking images and words and feelings from a number of realms of human endeavor and thought and bringing them all together into a poem s/he writes. This requires a huge effort of the imagination, which we might call the "esemplastic power of the poetic imagination." A decade after its first appearance a writer could remark, "Nor I trust will Coleridge's favorite word esemplastic..ever become current." Yet, when Farrar wrote his two volume work on St. Paul a half century later, he says, "The unifying--or if I may use the expression--esemplastic power of the imagination over the many subordinate truths.." One might not only refer to an esemplastic power of the imagination, but why not use the word to describe a person? "No one can ignore the esemplastic ability of great religious leaders to create a powerful movement out of a rag-tag and disheveled band of confused followers." If one is a theologian, one might pray for the esemplastic power of the Spirit to descend upon a schismatic gathering.

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