Printable Version
Pronunciation: pai-er-ri-ên Hear it!

Part of Speech: Adjective, proper

Meaning: 1. Related to Pieria, a region in Macedonia, northern Greece. 2. Of or related to the Muses, hence artistic or poetic inspiration.

Notes: Today's word has been ignored too long. This is the adjective for Pieria, the name of a geographical region in Greece. It has no adverb or noun. It's only relative is Pierides, the daughters of King Pierus.

In Play: In 1711, Alexander Pope wrote—famously at that time—in "An Essay on Criticism":
   A little Learning is a dang'rous Thing;
   Drink deep, or taste not the Pierian Spring

According to the Anderson News of Lawrenceburg, Kentucky, the annual High School Student Art Competition is sponsored by the Lawrenceburg Pierian Woman's Club.

Word History: Today's Good Word is the adjective referring to the Pieria region of Macedonia, Greece, wherein lies Mount Olympus. The Pierian Spring, sacred to the Muses, who are the source of artistic inspiration for the ancient Greeks. King Pierus's name and the name of the region comes from PIE peie- "be fat, swell", source also of Sanskrit payate "swells, exuberates", pituh "juice, sap, resin", Lithuanian pienas "milk", Greek pion "fat; wealthy," and, nasalized, Latin pinguis "fat". Dutch vet "fat", German fett "fat" and feist "repulsively fat", as well as English fat comes from the same PIE word with a -d suffix: pie-d-/poi-d-. (Today's Good Word is yet another from the richly arcane vocabulary of the mysterious Grogie, who has haunted the Alpha Agora for more than a decade.)

Dr. Goodword,

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