Firinn Taisdeal













abbatis A line of defense consisting of a barrier of felled or live trees with branches (sharpened or with barbed wire entwined) pointed toward the enemy.
ablation The removal of material from the surface of an object by vaporization, chipping, or other erosive processes. The term occurs in space physics associated with atmospheric reentry, in glaciology, medicine and passive fire protection.
acidulate To make something slightly, or moderately acid; to acidify; to make sour in a moderate degree; to sour somewhat; to use an acidic catalyst.
acidulous Slightly sour, sharp, caustic.
aconite 1. A poisonous plant (genus Aconitum) of the buttercup family, including monkshood, native to temperate regions of the northern hemisphere. 2. An extract of such a plant, used as a poison or in medicinal preparations.
acquest (rare) Acquisition; the thing gained.
acrasial Ill-mannered, ill-tempered.
ad valorem An ad valorem tax (Latin for according to value) is a tax based on the value of real estate or personal property. It is more common than a specific duty, a tax based on the quantity of an item, such as cents per kilogram, regardless of price. An ad valorem tax is typically imposed at the time of a transaction (a sales tax or value-added tax [VAT]), but it may be imposed on an annual basis (real or personal property tax) or in connection with another significant event (inheritance tax, surrendering citizenship, or tariffs).
adhocracy A type of organization that operates in opposite fashion to a bureaucracy. The term was first popularized in 1970 by Alvin Toffler, and has since become often used in the theory of management of organizations (particularly online organizations), further developed by academics such as Henry Mintzberg.
adiabatic A chemical or mechanical process which takes place without heat entering or leaving the system.
adiaphorism Adiaphoron (plural: adiaphora from the Greek ἀδιάφορα "indifferent things") was a concept used in Stoic philosophy to indicate things which were outside of moral law–that is, actions which are neither morally mandated nor morally forbidden. Adiaphora in Christianity refer to matters not regarded as essential to faith, but nevertheless as permissible for Christians or allowed in church. What is specifically considered adiaphora depends on the specific theology in view.
adiophorous Neither harmful nor beneficial.
aeschynite Aeschynite-(Y) (or Aeschinite-(Y), Aeschynite-(Yt), Blomstrandine, Priorite) (Y,Ca,Fe,Th)(Ti,Nb)2(O,OH)6 is a mineral of yttrium, calcium, iron, thorium, titanium, niobium, oxygen, and hydrogen. Its name comes from the Greek word for "shame." Its Mohs scale rating is 5 to 6.
afferent Of nerves and nerve impulses; conveying sensory information from the sense organs to the central nervous system.
affine transformation 1. A transformation for which parallel lines remain parallel. Affine transformations of the plane take squares into parallelograms and take circles into ellipses of the same shape. 2. Any set of translation, rotation, and scaling operations in the two spatial directions of the plane. Affine transformations allow maps with different scales, orientations, and origins to be coregistered.
afflatus A strong creative impulse; divine inspiration; "divine afflatus."
affordance An affordance is a quality of an object, or an environment, that allows an individual to perform an action. For example, a knob affords twisting, and perhaps pushing, while a cord affords pulling. The term is used in a variety of fields: perceptual psychology, cognitive psychology, environmental psychology, industrial design, human-computer interaction (HCI), interaction design, instructional design and artificial intelligence.
aftosa Foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) or hoof-and-mouth disease (Aphtae epizooticae) is a highly contagious and sometimes fatal viral disease of cloven-hoofed animals, including domestic animals such as cattle, water buffalo, sheep, goats and pigs, as well as antelope, bison and other wild bovids, and deer. It is caused by foot-and-mouth disease virus.
aga Title for a civil or military leader (especially in Turkey).
agape 1. (Christian theology) the love of God or Christ for mankind. 2. Selfless love of one person for another without sexual implications (especially love that is spiritual in nature). 3. A genus of moths of the Noctuidae family.
agnate A relative whose relation is traced only through male members of the family; related to someone by male connections or on the paternal side of the family.
agon Agon (Classical Greek ἀγών) is an ancient Greek word with several meanings. In one sense, it meant a contest, competition, especially the Olympic Games (Ὀλυμπιακοὶ Ἀγῶνες), or challenge that was held in connection with religious festivals. In its broader sense of a struggle or contest, agon referred to a contest in athletics, chariot or horse racing, music or literature at a public festival in ancient Greece. Agon was also a mythological personification of the contests listed above. This god was represented in a statue at Olympia with halteres (dumbbells) (ἁλτῆρες) in his hands. This statue was a work of Dionysius, and dedicated by a Smicythus of Rhegium. In Ancient Greek drama, particularly old comedy (fifth century B.C.), agon refers to the formal convention according to which the struggle between the characters should be scripted in order to supply the basis of the action. Agon is a formal debate which takes place between the chief characters in a Greek play, protagonist and antagonist, usually with the chorus acting as judge. The meaning of the term has escaped the circumscriptions of its classical origins to signify, more generally, the conflict on which a literary work turns.
agonist A classification used to describe a muscle that causes specific movement or possibly several movements to occur through the process of its own contraction. This is typically a term designated for skeletal muscles.
agranulacytosis Agranulocytosis, also known as agranulosis, is an acute condition involving a severe and dangerous leukopenia (lowered white blood cell count), most commonly of neutrophils, causing a neutropenia in the circulating blood. It represents a severe lack of one major class of infection-fighting white blood cells. People with this condition are at very high risk of serious infections due to their suppressed immune system. In agranulocytosis, the concentration of granulocytes (a major class of white blood cells that includes neutrophils, basophils, and eosinophils) drops below 500 cells/mm³ of blood, which is less than 5% of the normal value. Agranulocytosis is more severe than granulocytopenia and may involve more sub-types of white blood cells than neutropenia.
agronomy The science and technology of using plants for food, fuel, feed, and fiber. Agronomy encompasses work in the areas of plant genetics, plant physiology, meteorology, and soil science.
Ahasuerus 1. A king of Persia, later identified with Xerxes. 2. A name given to the Wandering Jew.
albarello A type of maiolica earthenware jar, originally a medicinal jar designed to hold apothecaries' ointments and dry drugs. The development of this type of pharmacy jar had its roots in the Middle East during the time of the Islamic conquests.
alembic An obsolete kind of container used for distillation; two retorts connected by a tube.
allocentric 1. Concerned with the interests of others more than one's own; community-minded. 2. Relating to spatial representations: linked to a reference frame based on the external environment and independent of one's current location in it. For example, giving the direction as "north," as opposed to "right" (egocentric).
allocentrism Allocentrism is a collectivistic personality attribute whereby people center their attention and actions on other people rather than themselves. It is a psychological dimension which corresponds to the general cultural dimension of collectivism. In fact, allocentrics "believe, feel, and act very much like collectivists do around the world." Allocentric people tend to be interdependent, define themselves in terms of the group that they are part of, and behave according to that group's cultural norms. They tend to have a sense of duty and share beliefs with other allocentrics among their in-group. Allocentric people appear to see themselves as an extension of their in-group and allow their own goals to be subsumed by the in-group's goals. Additionally, allocentrism has been defined as giving priority to the collective self over the private self, particularly if these two selves happen to come into conflict.
allocution 1. A formal speech, especially one which is regarded as authoritative and forceful. 2. The question put to a convicted defendant by a judge after the rendering of the verdict in a trial, in which the defendant is asked whether he or she wishes to make a statement to the court before sentencing.
alysosis Extreme boredom usually associated with the simple form of schizophrenia. Also known as otiumosis.
amalgamationist An advocate of the amalgamation of races.
amblyopia Amblyopia, also known as lazy eye, is a disorder of the visual system that is characterized by a vision deficiency in an eye that is otherwise physically normal, or out of proportion to associated structural abnormalities of the eye. It has been estimated to affect 1-5% of the population. Amblyopia means that visual stimulation either fails to transmit or is poorly transmitted through the optic nerve to the brain for a continuous period of time. It can also occur when the brain "turns off" the visual processing of one eye, to prevent double-vision, for example in strabismus (crossed-eyes). It often occurs during early childhood, resulting in poor or blurry vision. Amblyopia normally affects only one eye in most patients. However, it is possible, though rare, to be amblyopic in both eyes, if both fail to receive clear visual images. Detecting the condition in early childhood increases the chance of successful treatment, especially if detected before the age of five. The earlier it is detected, and the underlying cause corrected with spectacles and/or surgery, the more successful the treatment in equalizing vision between the two eyes. The colloquialism "lazy eye" is frequently used to refer to amblyopia. The term "lazy eye" is imprecise because it is a layman's term for strabismus, particularly exotropia.
amnestic Of or relating to or caused by amnesia.
amniotes A group of tetrapod vertebrates that have a terrestrially adapted egg. They currently include mammals (synapsids), and sauropsids (reptiles, including turtles and birds), as well as their fossil ancestors.
amour propre Feelings of excessive pride, literally "self-love."
amphiphile Amphiphile (from the Greek αμφις, amphis: both and φιλíα, philia: love, friendship) is a term describing a chemical compound possessing both hydrophilic (water-loving, polar) and lipophilic (fat-loving) properties. Such a compound is called amphiphilic or amphipathic. This forms the basis for a number of areas of research in chemistry and biochemistry, notably that of lipid polymorphism. Organic compounds containing hydrophilic groups at both ends of a prolate molecule are called bolaamphiphilic. Common amphiphilic substances are soaps and detergents.
amphipod Small krill-like crustaceans that are part of the plankton. They are an important prey item for a number of animals such as fishes and whales.
ampulla 1. The dilated portion of a canal or duct especially of the semicircular canals of the ear. 2. A flask that has two handles; used by Romans for wines or oils.
amusia Amusia refers to a number of disorders which are indicated by the inability to recognize musical tones or rhythms or to reproduce them. Amusia can be congenital (present at birth) or be acquired sometime later in life (as from brain damage).
anabasis Anabasis (Ἀνάβασις - Greek for "going up") is the most famous work of the Greek professional soldier and writer Xenophon. The journey it narrates is his best known accomplishment and "one of the great adventures in human history," as Will Durant expressed the common assessment.
anacreontic 1. Pertaining to the Greek poet Anacreon and his manners; jovial, festive. 2. Short lyrical piece that is about love and wine. 3. Anacreontics are verses in a meter used by the Greek poet Anacreon in his poems dealing with love and wine. His later Greek imitators (whose surviving poems are known as the Anacreontea) took up the same themes and used the Anacreontic meter.
anacrusis 1. One or more unaccented syllables at the beginning of a line of verse that are regarded as preliminary to and not part of the metrical pattern. 2. A group of notes at the start of a phrase of music that fall before the main beat or pulse of the actual piece.
analemma In astronomy, an analemma (Greek for the pedestal of a sundial) is a curve representing the angular offset of a celestial body (usually the Sun) from its mean position on the celestial sphere as viewed from another celestial body relative to the viewing body's celestial equator.
analeptic An analeptic, in medicine, is a central nervous system (CNS) stimulant medication. The term analeptic may also refer specifically to a respiratory analeptic (for example, doxapram), a drug that acts on the CNS to stimulate the breathing muscles, improving respiration.
anamnesis The remembering of things from a supposed previous existence (often used with reference to Platonic philosophy).
anancastic Refers to anancastic personality disorder, characterized by obsessive-compulsive behavior.
anapaest Two unaccented syllables followed by one accented syllable ("understand").
anaphora Also called epanaphora, the repetition of the same word or expression at the beginning of successive phrases, clauses, sentences, or lines for rhetorical or poetic effect, as in Lincoln's "we cannot dedicate–we cannot consecrate–we cannot hallow this ground" or from Fitzgerald's The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam: "Sans Wine, sans Song, sans Singer, and–sans End!"
ancilla 1. An auxiliary or accessory. 2. A female slave.
anelastic Pertaining to behavior showing no obvious relation between stress and strain.
anent About, concerning, in respect.
anfractuous 1. Sinuous, twisty, winding. 2. Full of twists and turns; "anfractuous cliffs."
anhedonia An inability to experience pleasure.
aniconism The practice or belief in avoiding or shunning the graphic representation of divine beings or religious figures, or in different manifestations, any human beings or living creatures.
anisotropic Having properties that differ according to the direction of measurement; exhibiting anisotropy. Materials that are anisotropic have non-uniform spatial distribution of optical properties (for example, refraction, transmission, reflection).
ankyloglossia Tongue tie: a congenital anomaly in which the mucous membrane under the tongue is too short, limiting the mobility of the tongue.
anodize To coat the surface of a metal electrolytically with an oxide, either as protection or decoration.
anodyne An anodyne (Greek αν, loss, and οδυνη, pain: a cause which relieves pain) is a medicine that relieves or soothes pain by lessening the sensitivity of the brain or nervous system.
anosognosia A condition in which a person who suffers disability seems unaware of or denies the existence of his or her disability. This may include unawareness of quite dramatic impairments, such as blindness or paralysis.
anthroposophy Anthroposophy, a spiritual philosophy based on the teachings of Rudolf Steiner, postulates the existence of an objective, intellectually comprehensible spiritual world accessible to direct experience through inner development, more specifically through cultivating conscientiously a form of thinking independent of sensory experience. In its investigations of the spiritual world, anthroposophy aims to attain the precision and clarity of natural science's investigations of the physical world. Whether this is a sufficient basis for anthroposophy to be considered a spiritual science has been a matter of controversy.
antimacassar A small cloth placed over the backs or arms of chairs, or the head or cushions of a sofa, to prevent soiling of the permanent fabric.
antinomianism Antinomianism (from the Greek ἀντί, "against" + νόμος, "law"), or lawlessness (in the Greek Bible: ἀνομία, "unlawful"), in theology, is the idea that members of a particular religious group are under no obligation to obey the laws of ethics or morality, and that salvation is by faith only. Antinomianism is the polar opposite of legalism, the notion that obedience to a code of religious law is necessary for salvation.
antinomy A contradiction between two beliefs or conclusions that are in themselves reasonable; a paradox.
antiphony An antiphon (Greek ἀντίφωνον, ἀντί "opposite" + φωνή "voice") is a response, usually sung in Gregorian chant, to a psalm or some other part of a religious service, such as at Vespers or at a Mass. This meaning gave rise to the "antiphony," a call and response style of singing.
antipodes Any two places or regions on diametrically opposite sides of the Earth; the North Pole and the South Pole are antipodes.
Anton syndrome Anton-Babinski syndrome is a rare symptom of brain damage occurring in the occipital lobe. People who suffer from it are "cortically blind," but affirm, often quite adamantly and in the face of clear evidence of their blindness, that they are capable of seeing.
antonomasia In rhetoric, antonomasia is a substitution of any epithet or phrase for a proper name, such as "the little corporal" for Napoleon I. The reverse process is also sometimes called antonomasia. The word derives from the Greek verb ἀντονομάζειν (antonomázein), meaning "to name differently." Antonomasia is a particular form of metonymy.
anzüglich anstößig, beziehungsvoll, anspielend, leicht böshaft
apanage An apanage or appanage is the grant of an estate, titles, offices, or other things of value to the younger male children of a sovereign, who under the system of primogeniture would otherwise have no inheritance. The system was widespread in much of Europe.
aperçu 1. A short synopsis. 2. A clever insight.
apheresis Loss or omission of one or more letters or sounds at the beginning of a word, as in "squire," derived from "esquire."
aphis Aphis is a genus of insects in the family Aphididae containing about 400 species of aphids. It includes many notorious agricultural pests, such as the soybean aphid A. glycines. Many Aphis, such as A. coreopsidis, are myrmecophiles, forming close associations with ants.
apocopation Loss or omission of the last letter, syllable or part of a word. Also, apocope.
apodictic 1. "Apodictic" or "apodeictic" (Ancient Greek: "ἀποδεικτικός," "capable of demonstration") is an adjectival expression from Aristotelean logic that refers to propositions that are demonstrable, that are necessarily or self-evidently the case or that, conversely, are impossible. 2. Of a proposition; necessarily true or logically certain.
apophasis Apophasis (Late Latin, from Greek apophanai, "to say no" ) refers, in general, to "mentioning by not mentioning." Apophasis covers a wide variety of figures of speech.
apophatic Of or relating to the belief that God can be known to humans only in terms of what He is not (such as "God is unknowable").
apophenia Apophenia is the experience of seeing meaningful patterns or connections in random or meaningless data. The term was coined in 1958 by Klaus Conrad, who defined it as the "unmotivated seeing of connections" accompanied by a "specific experience of an abnormal meaningfulness," but it has come to represent the human tendency to seek patterns in random nature in general, as with gambling, paranormal phenomena, religion, and even attempts at scientific observation.
apothem The apothem of a regular polygon is a line segment from the center to the midpoint of one of its sides. Equivalently, it is the line drawn from the center of the polygon that is perpendicular to one of its sides. The word "apothem" can also refer to the length of that line segment.
apotropaic Refers to objects such as amulets and talismans or other symbols intended to "ward off evil" or "avert or combat evil."
apparitor In ancient Rome, an apparitor (in English also spelled apparator or shortened to paritor) was a civil servant whose salary was paid from the public treasury. The apparitores assisted the magistrates. There were four occupational grades (decuriae) among them. The highest of these was the scribae, the clerks or public notaries, followed by the lictores, lictors; viatores, messengers or summoners, that is, agents on official errands; and praecones, announcers or heralds.
appositive A word or phrase that restates or modifies an immediately preceding noun. Note: An appositive is often useful as a context clue for determining or refining the meaning of the word or words to which it refers. Example: My son Enrico (appositive) is twelve years old.
aprosexia Inability to concentrate. Aprosexia, hyperprosexia, and paraprosexia are closely related medical and neuro-psychiatric phenomena associated with attention and concentration. They typically occurs in patients suffering traumatic brain injuries.
apse A domed or vaulted recess or projection on a building especially the east end of a church; usually contains the altar.
aptonym A person's name that is regarded as amusingly appropriate to their occupation.
arbitral Relating to or resulting from arbitration; "the arbitral adjustment of the controversy"; "an arbitrational settlement."
arcanum 1. Secret: information known only to a special group. 2. A mystery or deep secret; An elixir or secret remedy. 3. Arcanum is a Catholic encyclical written in 1880 by Pope Leo XIII on the topic of Christian marriage. It was considered the forerunner to Pope Pius XI's 1930 Casti Connubii and Pope Paul VI's 1968 Humanae Vitae.
archimandrite The head of a large monastery or group of monasteries in the Orthodox Church.
aretology That part of moral philosophy which deals with virtue, its nature, and the means of arriving at it.
argumentum ad baculum An argument where force, coercion, or the threat of force, is given as a justification for a conclusion.
arhat Arhat (Sanskrit: अर्हत arhat; Pali: arahant), in Buddhism, signifies a spiritual practitioner who has realized certain high stages of attainment.
arioso In classical music, arioso is a style of solo opera singing between recitative and aria. Literally, arioso means airy.
armillary 1. An armillary sphere (variations are known as spherical astrolabe, armilla, or armil) is a model of the celestial sphere. 2. Resembling a bracelet or armilla; consisting of rings or circles.
arrack An alcoholic beverage that is distilled mainly in South Asia and South East Asia from fermented fruit, grain, sugarcane, or the sap of coconut palms. Arrack typically has golden amber color, which distinguishes it from the colorless and transparent Middle Eastern arak.
artifex Author, artist, artisan, maker.
asafoetida Asafoetida (Ferula assafoetida) (Urdu ہینگ), alternative spelling asafetida, pronounced /æsəˈfɛtɪdə/ (also known as devil's dung, stinking gum, asant, food of the gods, Kaayam (Malayalam), Hing (Marathi, Gujarati, Hindi, Urdu) is the dried latex (gum oleoresin) exuded from the living underground rhizome or tap root of several species of Ferula, which is a perennial herb (1 to 1.5 m high). The species is native to the mountains of Afghanistan, and is mainly cultivated in nearby India. Asafoetida has a pungent, unpleasant smell when raw, but in cooked dishes, it delivers a smooth flavor, reminiscent of leeks.
asthenosphere The asthenosphere (from Greek asthenēs 'weak' + sphere) is the mechanically weak ductily-deforming region of the upper mantle of the Earth. It lies below the lithosphere, at depths between 100 and 200 km (~ 62 and 124 miles) below the surface, but perhaps extending as deep as 400 km (~ 249 miles).
astragalus 1. The talus bone or astragalus is a bone in the tarsus of the foot that forms the lower part of the ankle joint through its articulations with the lateral and medial malleoli of the two bones of the lower leg, the tibia and fibula. 2. A plant native to Asia, considered to be one of the most important herbs in traditional Chinese medicine.
astrocytoma A tumor that begins in the brain or spinal cord in small, star-shaped cells called astrocytes.
astroid In mathematics, an astroid is a particular type of curve: a hypocycloid with four cusps.
atabrine Quinacrine (trade name: Atabrine) is a drug with a number of different medical applications. Quinacrine was initially approved in the 1930s as an antimalarial drug. This antiprotozoal is also approved for the the treatment of Giardiasis (an intestinal parasite), and has been researched as an inhibitor of phospholipase A2.
ataxia The loss of full control of bodily movements.
atopy A syndrome characterized by a tendency to be "hyper allergic." A person with atopy typically presents with one or more of the following: eczema (atopic dermatitis), allergic rhinitis (hay fever), allergic conjunctivitis, or allergic asthma. Also known as atopic syndrome.
atrabilious Characterized by melancholy.
attar Attar is the English form of itr, the Arabic word for fragrance or perfume. A traditional attar is made from the distilled essence of floral or other fragrance materials in a base of sandalwood oil.
aureole 1. The outermost region of the sun's atmosphere; visible as a white halo during a solar eclipse. 2. A circle of light or radiance surrounding the head or body of a representation of a deity or holy person; a halo.
aurochs The aurochs or urus (Bos primigenius), the ancestor of domestic cattle, was a type of huge wild cattle which inhabited Europe, Asia and North Africa, but is now extinct; it survived in Europe until 1627.
autarkic 1. Of or pertaining to an autarky; self-sufficient. 2. Of countries; not relying on imports.
autocephaly The state wherein a church's leaders have severed ties from a larger body and thus no longer report to a higher authority.
autochthon 1. An aboriginal inhabitant. 2. One of the indigenous plants or animals of a region.
autochthonous Native to the place where found; indigenous; Originating, where found; Buried in place, especially of a fossil preserved in its life position without disturbance or disarticulation.
autoclave A strong, heated container used for chemical reactions and other processes using high pressures and temperatures.
automorphism An isomorphism from a mathematical object to itself. It is, in some sense, a symmetry of the object, and a way of mapping the object to itself while preserving all of its structure.
autoscopy An experience in which a person, while believing him or her self to be awake, sees his or her body and the world from a location outside his or her physical body.
autotrophic Of or relating to organisms (as green plants) that can make complex organic nutritive compounds from simple inorganic sources by photosynthesis.
auxesis 1. Growth from increase in cell size without cell division. 2. (from the Greek: αὔξησις, auxēsis, "increase") A form of hyperbole, in which something is referred to by a term disproportionate to its importance for the very purpose of amplifying that thing's importance or gravity.
axonometric A drawing technique devised to represent three dimensional objects on flat paper. Verticals are drawn to scale, but diagonal dimensions are distorted.
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