GODSEND: a person or thing that comes unexpectedly but is particularly welcome

My friend, Newport Betty, sent along some nice comments to a recent blog posting and included the word godsend in one of them.  She indicated that it would be an interesting word to pursue, and I agreed. The World English Dictionary points out that in its earliest days the term was directly related to God […]

SPARED: to deal gently or leniently with; show consideration for

I was commenting on the fact that so far we have been spared the kind of snowy winter being experienced in Upstate New York when it occurred to me that the word spared is kind of interesting.  It is one of those words we take for granted because we use it so much.  But when […]

MIRACLE: an event realized, despite it being out of the realm of expectation

Earlier this week I had indicated that it was my dream to know that the 33 miners trapped in a copper/gold mine in Chile were rescued.  I knew it was a slim possibility, and that there were experts working hard to make it happen.   But it had never been done before, and the risks involved […]

PANOPTICON: a circular prison, giving the guards maximum visual observance of prisoners

The idea of constructing a prison in such a way that one, lone guard has 360 degree observation of the entire population makes all kinds of sense.  I’m kind of squeamish about it being only one guard; maybe there could be two or three just in case.  But there’s no question that it minimizes the […]