Monday, January 11, 2010

Another new word

I came across a new word while reading Anne of Green Gables: "coruscations," as in "Her eyes dwelt affectionately on Green Gables, peering through its network of trees and reflecting the sunlight back from its windows in several little coruscations of glory."

My spell check doesn't know what to do with such a word.

Certainly you can get a sense of what it is by reading the sentence. But having a sense of things is just never enough, so I looked it up. According to the sources I checked online, the word dates from at least the early 19th century. And it means a sudden flash of light.

In Anne of Green Gables, "coruscations" is used in the narrative, rather than the dialog. But Anne Shirley, with all her dramatic tendencies, would have loved that word.

We in Pocatello can see a coruscation every sunny day -- it's from the Farm Bureau building that sits on the east bench above town. The building has a full glass front that faces the setting sun. Watch out when you're driving on the Interstate -- the "coruscation" is blinding.

- Catherine

1 comment:

Carrie said...

Woah. You're in Pocatello. I know that town! (I lived in Idaho for almost a year and loved it. Beautiful state.)