Words, page 18


By the time Netscape assumed stewardship, the Open Directory Project had about 100,000 URLs indexed with contributions from about 4500 editors.
stewardship = the position of steward. (steward = someone who manages property or other affairs for someone else)


Now my cousin and I were sworn friends, for he ever entreated me with exceeding kindness. He killed for me the fattest sheep and strained the best of his wines, and we enjoyed long conversing and carousing. One day when the wine had gotten the better of us, the son of my uncle said to me, “O my cousin, I have a great service to ask of thee, and I desire that thou stay me not in whatso I desire to do!” And I replied, “With joy and goodly will.”
The First Kalandar's Tale (Arabian Nights; Richard Burton)
carousing = To engage in boisterous, drunken merrymaking. (AHD)


Noble patricians, patrons of my right,
Defend the justice of my cause with arms;
And, countrymen, my loving followers,
Plead my successive title with your swords.
I am his first born son that was the last
That wore the imperial diadem of Rome;
Then let my father's honours live in me,
Nor wrong mine age with this indignity.
Titus, act 1 scene 1 (Shakespeare)
diadem = a ornamental jewelled headdress signifying sovereignty.


The declivity was so small, that I walked near a mile before I got to the shore …
declivity = a downward slope or bend.


The Time Traveller (for so it will be convenient to speak of him) was expounding a recondite matter to us. His grey eyes shone and twinkled, and his usually pale face was flushed and animated. The fire burned brightly, and the soft radiance of the incandescent lights in the lilies of silver caught the bubbles that flashed and passed in our glasses. Our chairs, being his patents, embraced and caressed us rather than submitted to be sat upon, and there was that luxurious after-dinner atmosphere when thought runs gracefully free of the trammels of precision. And he put it to us in this way—marking the points with a lean forefinger—as we sat and lazily admired his earnestness over this new paradox (as we thought it) and his fecundity.
fecundity = the intellectual fruitfulness of a creative imagination.


But man differs from other animals in one very important respect, and that is that he has some desires which are, so to speak, infinite, which can never be fully gratified, and which would keep him restless even in Paradise. The boa constrictor, when he has had an adequate meal, goes to sleep, and does not wake until he needs another meal. Human beings, for the most part, are not like this. When the Arabs, who had been used to living sparingly on a few dates, acquired the riches of the Eastern Roman Empire, and dwelt in palaces of almost unbelievable luxury, they did not, on that account, become inactive. Hunger could no longer be a motive, for Greek slaves supplied them with exquisite viands at the slightest nod. But other desires kept them active: four in particular, which we can label acquisitiveness, rivalry, vanity, and love of power.


On the subject of the Wooster brain, opinions seem to diverge somewhat. Considering that I am almost constantly occupied in pondering fruity schemes of great pith and moment, as the fellow said, in various capacities as counsellor and intermédiaire to my many friends, it might come as a surprise to an innocent bystander that derogatory epithets have been applied to the said Wooster brain.
pith = Soft spongelike central cylinder of the stems of most flowering plants; the choicest or most essential or most vital part of some idea or experience.


I love math. I respect Math. I'm nothing but a menial servant to Mathematics. Who the fck is this David guy, who proclaims that he's no mathematician, then proceed to tell us he doesn't fcking care about math? Then, he went on about HIS personal zeal for physics, in particular injecting the highly quacky “quantum mechanics” with impunity.


The previous two posts by Barry Margolin and Kent M Pitman are really good paradigm. Good as paragon of stupid writings. Full fledged in all aspects. Are you about to contribute to this genre?
Xah Lee in newsgroup comp.lang.lisp, 2000-07-23
fledge = decorate with feathers.


Thereupon she calls her winged son Cupid, mischievous enough in his own nature, and rouses and provokes him yet more by her complaints. She points out Psyche to him and says, “My dear son, punish that contumacious beauty; give your mother a revenge as sweet as her injuries are great; infuse into the bosom of that haughty girl a passion for some low, mean, unworthy being, so that she may reap a mortification as great as her present exultation and triumph.”
the Story of Cupid and Psyche (Lucius Apuleius; Thomas Bulfinch)
contumacious = Obstinately disobedient or rebellious; insubordinate. (AHD)


Here, i swiped it for you. (swipe = filch)
Dialogue from Japanese animation Spirited Away, 2001.


The penis of Napoleon was reportedly severed at his autopsy, and purloined: it was some years later sold to a urologist for $40,000.
purloined = To steal, often in a violation of trust.


By any measure the project [Fifth-generation computer] was an abject failure. At the end of the ten year period they had burned through over 50 billion yen and the program was terminated without having met its goals. The workstations had no appeal in a market where single-CPU systems could outrun them, the software systems never worked, and the entire concept was then made obsolete by the internet.
abject = Brought low in condition or status. (AHD)


… in Fremont, California, burglars disarmed a security system and made off with more than $1.8 million of chips and computer equipment in a January warehouse heist.
Your Chips Or Your Life! By JOHN GREENWALD. May. 02, 1994. Time Mag.
The film is a comedy about a jewel heist, planned by George Thomason (played by Tom Georgeson), and its aftermath.
heist = the act of stealing.


But I was troubled and made restless by my wife's absence and could not sleep, for although my eyes were closed, my mind and thoughts were wide-awake. Presently I heard the slave girl at my head say to her at my feet: “O Mas'udah, how miserable is our master and how wasted in his youth, and oh! the pity of his being so betrayed by our mistress, the accursed whore!” The other replied: “Yes indeed. Allah curse all faithless women and adulterous! But the like of our master, with his fair gifts, deserveth something better than this harlot who lieth abroad everynight.”
abroad = in wide circulation; about; at large.


You profess to see, whereas you see nothing but a Point! You plume yourself on inferring the existence of a Straight Line; but I can see Straight Lines, and infer the existence of Angles, Triangles, Squares, Pentagons, Hexagons, and even Circles. Why waste more words?
plume = be proud of.


For a minute, perhaps, my mind was wool-gathering.
wool-gathering = dreamy in mood or nature.


The jury deadlocked on four of the 22 statements over which Pagones had sued, and eight statements were found non-defamatory.
deadlocked = at a complete standstill because of opposition of two unrelenting forces or factions.


In the 2000s, Crumb became increasingly ambivalent about continuing to contribute to new issues of Zap. By issue #14 he announced to the other artists he wasn't interested in continuing; this resulted in a brief physical altercation with Victor Moscoso, in which Moscoso slapped Crumb and called him “Mr. Fcking Moviestar!”
altercation = A vehement quarrel. (AHD)