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seminal

 

PRONUNCIATION:
(SEM-uh-nuhl) 

 

MEANING:
adjective:
1. Highly original and proving influential on later work.
2. Of or relating to semen or seed.

 

ETYMOLOGY:
From Latin semen (seed). Ultimately from the Indo-European root se- (to sow) which also gave us seed, sow, season, seminary, and disseminate. Earliest documented use: 1398.

 

The phrase “wild hair” (as in ‘he took off from work because he had a wild hair’) is short for “wild hair up his butt.” It means to have a fixation or obsession with something, because if you have a wild hair up your butt you can’t think about anything else.

The Washington Monthly (source)

Not to be confused with

The word “gay” had another original meaning – and I don’t mean happy.

“In addition to its original and continuing senses of “merry, lively”and “bright or showy,” gay  has had various senses dealing withsexual conduct since the 17th century. A gay woman  was a prostitute, a gay man  a womanizer, a gay house  a brothel. This sexual world included homosexuals too, and gay  as an adjective meaning “homosexual” may go back to the late 1930s.”

Dictionary.com (source)

Scaphism

Scaph”ism\, n. [Gr. ska`fh a trough.] An ancient mode of punishing criminals among the Persians, by confining the victim in a trough, with his head and limbs smeared with honey or the like, and exposed to the sun and to insects until he died.

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