Michael Tomasky present his final weekly vocabulary quiz, but he says other quizzes are coming. I didn’t take any guesses. I just acknowledged that I don’t know any of these:
1. If a person has a rebarbative quality, he is:
a. irritating or repellent in some way.
b. mean-spirited, bereft of fellow feeling.
c. of uneven temperament, unpredictable.
2. If you cast something into the ordure, you have flung it into:
a. the atmosphere.
b. a literal mound of feces.
c. a pile of leaves and cut grass and the like.
3. You don’t want to be part of a hecatomb because it is:
a. a large-scale sacrifice or slaughter of some kind.
b. a mass grave site.
c. a group of one hundred people condemned to fiery eternity.
4. If you’re involved in a velitation, you are:
a. fighting as a soldier in a war.
b. trying to raise a spirit.
c. engaged in a skirmish or dispute.
5. Your hamartia is your:
a. tragic flaw that leads to your downfall.
b. decisive intellectual limitation.
c. secret aerie or hideaway.
Answers: 1-a, 2-b, 3-a, 4-c, 5-a. Hamartia comes from the Greeks, it seems. It was news to me.