Monday, September 27, 2010


You may already know that I am a fan of the Word of the Day” and am often intrigued by some of the words they use. Some are quite ordinary and still in common usage, some quite interesting although somewhat rare, and others are just so plainly never in common usage in today’s English. And others just seem so archaic to us Aussie’s (Australians).
On our recent Rivers cruise of Europe, we came across one such seeming word, which in my mind is now, my word of the Year. And that word is “Apothecary”
I called it above, a seeming archaic word. That is because here in Australia, it just isn’t in common usage at all. However in Europe it is so common that it is plastered almost everywhere.
I suffer at times from headaches and so like to have some Aspirin or Panadol handy at all times, but with Drug enforcement so strict, I didn’t want to go through the fuss of taking some with me from here to Europe on our trip, and so decided to wait till we arrived in the Netherlands and then nip out to the nearest Chemist shop to buy some.
However upon arrival there could not find a single Chemist, or even a Pharmacist sign anywhere. Found out a couple of days later that they don’t have chemists or pharmacists in the Netherlands or indeed in Europe at all. No! What they do have though are, yes you guessed it, “Apothecaries”!
Thus armed with this information I was able to buy some Panadol. (Trying to ask for Panadol in English, where English was not spoken was another issue, but that’s another story.)
Just recently I was reading the Book of Ecclesiastes, in my King James Bible. And when I came to Chapter 10 verse one, I nearly fell out of my bed. For there, in my very own Bible, was the word Apothecary.
(Upon doing a word check I found that it is also used another half dozen times in the KJV.) However as I don’t normally use the KJV regularly, and in the modern translations they use the more broader meaning “of mixing of herbs and spices” and use the word Perfumer, which in Australia at least is not a particularly popular or common word either.
So that is my uncommon “Word for the Year”: so far. What are some uncommon words that you have found recently, that are more common than you originally thought?

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