Word Frequency Lists Translation Services Word Databases
Alphadictionary.com

Our Sponsors

Technical Translation
Website TranslationClip Art
 

Christmas-tree

Printable Version Pronunciation: kris-mês-chree Hear it!

Part of Speech: Verb, transitive

Meaning: 1. To fill in randomly answers to test questions that you don't know, as though adding ornaments to a Christmas tree. 2. To add superfluous items randomly, as to Christmas-tree a legislative bill with unnecessary amendments.

Notes: Bling-bling!This verb has apparently been trying to make it into the English vocabulary for some time. In addition to the two solid definitions mentioned above, it also has been randomly used to mean "provide with a Christmas tree" and "chase up a Christmas tree". We did not include these meanings because they don't seem to have established themselves so far.

In Play: This word has been making its rounds around US schools for quite some time: "I just couldn't miss Claudia's pajama party last night so I had to Christmas-tree the bio mid-term." Now it has turned up in congressional hearings for the bill that bailed out the US banking industry in 2008: "Senator Shumer promised that the Congress will not Christmas-tree the bail-out plan with unnecessary provisions and amendments."

Word History: Today's Good Word shows poignantly the difficulties of etymology. It clearly is a new verb that has arisen, probably, within the last ten years, yet no one knows who initiated it. We don't even know where it was first published. Christmas, of course, is a reduction of "Christ's mass". Christ, in its turn, is not part of the name of Jesus of Nazareth, but rather an epithet from Greek: khristos "anointed", the verbal adjective of khriein "to anoint". Jesus Christ hence means "Jesus the Anointed" or did originally—a long way from the meaning of today's Good Word. The word for "anointed" in Aramaic, by the way, the language spoken by Jesus, is meshiha, rendered in English as Messiah.

Dr. Goodword, alphaDictionary.com

P.S. - Register for the Daily Good Word E-Mail! - You can get our daily Good Word sent directly to you via e-mail in either HTML or Text format. Go to our Registration Page to sign up today!