Saturday, July 18, 2009

adumbrate: Word of the Day Word of the Day

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Word of the Day for Saturday, July 18, 2009

adumbrate \AD-uhm-brayt; uh-DUHM-\, transitive verb:

1. To produce a faint image or resemblance of; to outline or sketch.
2. To prefigure indistinctly; foreshadow.
3. To suggest, indicate, or disclose partially.
4. To cast a shadow over; to shade; to obscure.

The next day, when the year that had passed had been fully gone over and the hope for the year to come had been cautiously adumbrated, the delicate moment arrived when Ben Attar had to decide how to apportion the year's profit among the three partners.
-- Abraham B. Yehoshua, A Journey to the End of the Millennium
The letter even fixes the meeting as having taken place on October 23, which fits the chronology adumbrated by Professor Bald.
-- Jeremy Bernstein, "Heaven's Net: The Meeting of John Donne and Johannes Kepler", American Scholar, Spring 1997
The symbolical paintings, as they have come to be called, adumbrate a dark dream world where what seem dimly recollected circumstances, caught in their own nocturnal inertia, remain cryptic and mystifying.
-- Robert Berlind, "Edwin Dickinson: waking visions", Art in America, February 2003

Adumbrate derives from Latin adumbrare, "to sketch" (literally, "to shade towards," hence "to foreshadow or prefigure"), from ad-, "towards" + umbrare, "to shade," from umbra, "shadow." Entry and Pronunciation for adumbrate

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