Word of the Day : November 19, 2017


adjective FER-vid


1 : very hot : burning

2 : marked by often extreme intensity of feeling

Did You Know?

The Latin verb fervēre can mean "to boil" or "to glow," as well as, by extension, "to seethe" or "to be roused." In English, this root gives us three words that can mean "impassioned" by varying degrees: fervid, fervent, and perfervid. Fervid and fervent are practically synonymous, but while fervid usually suggests warm emotion that is expressed in a spontaneous or feverish manner (as in "fervid basketball fans"), fervent is reserved for a kind of emotional warmth that is steady and sincere (as in "a fervent belief in human kindness"). Perfervid combines fervid with the Latin prefix per- ("thoroughly") to create a word meaning "marked by overwrought or exaggerated emotion," as in "a perfervid display of patriotism."


"Here at the Toronto International Film Festival, there are posters for an upcoming Guillermo del Toro-curated exhibit called 'Influences' that will let you sample the movies and books and music that fed the director's fervid imagination." — David Edelstein, Vulture, 14 Sept. 2017

"The travellers set forth on horseback, and purposed to perform much of their aimless journeyings under the moon, and in the cool of the morning or evening twilight; the midday sun … being still too fervid to allow of noontide exposure." — Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Marble Faun, 1860

Word Family Quiz

Unscramble the letters to create a verb derived from Latin fervēre that can mean "to bubble, hiss, and foam as gas escapes" or "to show liveliness": VFFCEEREES.



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