Word of the Day : August 24, 2014

dovecote

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noun DUV-koht

Definition

1 : a small compartmented raised house or box for domestic pigeons

2 : a settled or harmonious group or organization

Did You Know?

When Shakespeare's Coriolanus was condemned to die by the Volscians, the doomed general proudly reminded his enemies, "Like an eagle in a dove-cote, I Flutter'd your Volscians in Corioli." (Coriolanus was referring to an earlier victory in which his army had seized the city of Corioli from the Volscians.) When he introduced that eagle into the dovecote, Shakespeare also introduced a new figure of speech, but one that wasn't truly "discovered" by most writers until the 19th century-and then from a misquote. English novelist Edward G. Lytton reminded folks about it in 1853 when he wrote about how "the great Roman general did 'flutter the dove-cots in Corioli.'" Nowadays, we sometimes "ruffle" dovecotes or "cause a flurry" in them, in addition to "fluttering" them or "causing a flutter" in them.


Examples

"The Sultan of Oman has also been a significant contributor, paying for the magnificent dovecote made from English walnut at the end of the lime walk." - Steve Whysall, Vancouver Sun, June 26, 2014

"A leaked anonymous letter, the so-called Trojan Horse letter, claimed there was a conservative Muslim conspiracy to infiltrate and take over as many as two dozen local schools. It caused fluttering in very many interested dovecotes." - Mary Dejevsky, Newsweek, June 15, 2014



Test Your Memory

What former Word of the Day begins with "r" and means "relation marked by harmony, conformity, accord, or affinity"? The answer is …


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