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September 20, 2014

Word of the Day

  • carouse
  • audio pronunciation
  • \kuh-ROWZ ("OW" as in "cow")\
  • DEFINITION

verb

1 : to drink liquor freely or excessively 2 : to take part in a drunken revel : engage in dissolute behavior

  • EXAMPLE

The sailor spent all of shore leave carousing with his mates.

"Separatist fighters have taken to carousing drunkenly at night and wearing civilian clothes." — Andrew E. Kramer, The New York Times, August 20, 2014

  • DID YOU KNOW?

Sixteenth-century English revelers toasting each other's health sometimes drank a brimming mug of spirits straight to the bottom—drinking "all-out," they called it. German tipplers did the same and used the German expression for "all out"—gar aus. The French adopted the German term as carous, using the adverb in their expression boire carous ("to drink all out"), and that phrase, with its idiomatic sense of "to empty the cup," led to carrousse, a French noun meaning "a large draft of liquor." And that's where English speakers picked up carouse in the mid-1500s, first as a noun (which later took on the sense of a general "drinking bout"), and then as a verb meaning "to drink freely."

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