Category Archives: REH Poetry

REH Work of the Week: neophyte

noun 1. a person who has just started learning or doing something; a new convert [origin: 14th century; Middle English, from Late Latin neophytus, from Greek neophytos, from neophytes newly planted, newly converted, from ne- + phyein to bring forth] HOWARD’S USAGE: Shatter the shrines and let the idols fall; The gods are dead; Time […]

REH Word of the Week: reinless

    adjective 1. lacking control or guidance; unchecked; unrestrained [origin: Old French reine (Fr. rêne) through Late Latin. retina, from retinēre, to hold back] HOWARD’S USAGE: The day that I die shall the sky be clear And the east sea-wind blow free, Sweeping along with its rover’s song To bear my soul to sea. […]

REH Word of the Week 2009 Revisited: bill

(the bill weapon in the center, upper row is compared to other bladed weapons) noun 1. a weapon in use up to the 18th century that consists of a long staff ending in a hook-shaped blade. [origin: 14th century; Middle English bil, from Old English bill sword; akin to old High German bill pickax HOWARD’S USAGE: There’s […]

REH Word of the Week: bawcocks

Sir Francis Drake by Thomas Heath Robinson noun 1. archaic. a fine fellow [origin: 1599; French beau coq, from beau fine + coq fellow] HOWARD’S USAGE: On Devon downs I met the ghost of Drake; His sigh was a sea-wind that whispered past: “Dost know barnacles crust the rotting strake, And salt weed shrines the […]

REH Word of the Week: censer

noun 1. a container in which incense is burned, typically in a religious ceremony especially a covered vessel swung on chains. [origin: 13th century; Middle English: from Old French censier, from encensier, from encens] HOWARD’S USAGE: “Ages ago (said the lost god) was I born from the flaming dew and the deep blue caverns of […]

REH Word of the Week: avatar

noun 1. the human or animal form of a Hindu god on earth; someone who represents a type of person, an idea or an embodiment (as of a concept or philosophy) often in a person, or a quality; computers: a small picture that represents a computer user. [origin: 1784; Sanskrit avataraḥ descent, from avatarati he descends, […]

REH Word of the Week: veldt

(Boers trekking through South African veldt) original painting by James McConnell) noun 1. an area of grassy land with few trees or shrubs especially in southern Africa [origin: ca 1855; Afrikaans veld, from Dutch, field; akin to Old English field] HOWARD’S USAGE: Along the road to Babel When dawn was in the sky I met […]

REH Word of the Week 2010 Revisited: dree

(The wreck of the SS American Star beneath the ocean) verb 1. endure or suffer (something burdensome or painful) [origin: before 12th century; Middle English from Old English; chiefly Scottish ] HOWARD’S USAGE: There’s a kingdom far from the sun and star With never a wind to dree; Where the golden balls of the silence […]

REH Word of the Week: bloodstone

noun 1. a green chalcedony sprinkled with red spots resembling blood; used as a gemstone [origin: 1551; no etymology for bloodstone but often referred to as heliotrope which is Greek for sun turning.) HOWARD’S USAGE: Through the scented gloom of the great cavern the voice sank to a lulling refrain, and the silken and velvet […]

REH Word of the Week 2010 Revisited: gynaeconitis

(painting by John Frederick Lewis) noun 1. That portion of a house reserved for women, generally the innermost apartment; women’s quarters. The women’s quarters of the home were called gynaikeions. Here, the married woman of the household would often join the unmarried women and the female slaves at night when she did not join her […]