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EGREGIOUS

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EGREGIOUS

Postby Dr. Goodword » Thu Dec 07, 2006 10:58 pm

• egregious •

Pronunciation: ê-gree-jês • Hear it!

Part of Speech: Adjective

Meaning: Flagrantly bad, outrageously offensive.

Notes: Today's is a highly vowelled word, containing all the vowels of the alphabet except A but doubling up on E to compensate for the omission. Try to keep them in order. The meaning of egregious goes beyond that of flagrant and refers only to something excruciatingly flagrant. The noun is egregiousness and the adverb, egregiously.

In Play: We hope that nothing egregious ever happens to you but if it does, today's Good Word will stand you in good stead to talk about it: "Referring to the archbishop as 'dude' was such an egregious error of judgment, I can't believe I heard you say it!" Remember, the sense of today's word goes beyond even outrageous: "When I told Ally Katz that Fairchild had died in a car accident over the weekend, her egregious response was to ask if she could have his company parking space."

Word History: Today's Good Word started out in life with a much more gleaming meaning. It is an English makeover of Latin egregius "outstanding, exceptional" from ex- "out of, from" + grex (greg+s) "the herd," i.e. "standing out from the herd." Of course, that sense is rather ambiguous since good or bad behavior separates us from the herd; over time the implication has slid from standing out in a good sense to standing out in a bad sense. The root here, greg-, is visible in a series of other English words referring metaphorically to herding: congregate from con- "together, with" + greg implies gathering as a herd, segregate from se- "apart" + greg implies separation from the herd, and aggregate from ad "to(ward)" + greg implies adding to the herd. (At no time does Susan Lister stand out more from the herd than when she sends us sterling Good Words like today's.)
Last edited by Dr. Goodword on Sat May 05, 2012 10:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Bailey » Fri Dec 08, 2006 5:31 pm

Seems to me that egregious, the word didn't start out being quite so, er egregious.

mark way-outta-the-herd Bailey

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Postby skinem » Fri Dec 08, 2006 10:57 pm

"...but, alas, the wildebeest leaves the safety of the herd." A rather egregious error...

Isn't the above the way most nature shows go?
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Postby gailr » Sat Dec 09, 2006 3:30 pm

skinem wrote:"...but, alas, the wildebeest leaves the safety of the herd." A rather egregious error...

Therefore, better to confine oneself to herd mentality than to risk being outstanding in one's field? :wink:
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Postby Bailey » Sat Dec 09, 2006 3:59 pm

exactly, my friend is the best farmer around he is outstanding in his field.

mark no-herd-animal-I Bailey

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Postby skinem » Sat Dec 09, 2006 3:59 pm

gailr wrote:
skinem wrote:"...but, alas, the wildebeest leaves the safety of the herd." A rather egregious error...

Therefore, better to confine oneself to herd mentality than to risk being outstanding in one's field? :wink:


Ha! By no means! In fact, I was out standing in my field just a few minutes ago...

I'm more a believer in Thoreau's statement about marching to a beat of a different drummer. Obvious from my off-center postings...

But, if someone's a wildebeest--leaving the herd would be a problem...of an egregious nature.
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Postby Bailey » Sat Dec 09, 2006 4:44 pm

a wildebeest of a different snout. I think they'd all like to stay in the herd but sometimes their differences force them out.

mark dancing-to-a-crazy-drummer-only-I hear Bailey

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Postby gailr » Sat Dec 09, 2006 9:18 pm

Bailey wrote:a wildebeest of a different snout. I think they'd all like to stay in the herd but sometimes their differences force them out.


"Taking a gnu step, uttering a gnu word, is what people fear most." -with apologies to Dostoyevsky

"The real voyage of discovery consists, not in seeking gnu landscapes, but in having gnu eyes." -with apologies to Proust

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Postby Bailey » Sat Dec 09, 2006 9:56 pm

But the big bad thing is if someone thinks differently or swims upstream, they must be cut out of the herd.

mark e-gre-gious Bailey

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Postby skinem » Sat Dec 09, 2006 10:03 pm

Bailey wrote:But the big bad thing is if someone thinks differently or swims upstream, they must be cut out of the herd.

mark e-gre-gious Bailey


Only if you're part of the herd in the first place.

Skinem--dancing to a kazoo
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Postby Perry » Mon Dec 11, 2006 12:31 pm

In short, egregious behavior is unherd of.
"Time is nature's way of keeping everything from happening all at once. Lately it hasn't been working."
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Postby Bailey » Mon Dec 11, 2006 6:46 pm

skinem wrote:
Bailey wrote:But the big bad thing is if someone thinks differently or swims upstream, they must be cut out of the herd.

mark e-gre-gious Bailey


Only if you're part of the herd in the first place.


That's it isn't it? everyone is expected to conform, even non-conformists end up conforming to their own brand of non-conformity.
Skinem--dancing to a kazoo


mark playing-the-drums Bailey

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Postby skinem » Mon Dec 11, 2006 7:51 pm

Bailey wrote:That's it isn't it? everyone is expected to conform, even non-conformists end up conforming to their own brand of non-conformity.


The quandry of adolesence--the desire to be different but not too different. Thus clicks are formed and so is born the rebel without a clue...or cause. Not that that is usually egregious (just to strike a glancing blow upon the topic) but it is all too common.
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