It’s been a while since I did a Booking Through Thursday, usually because Thursday happens without me noticing… cunning, but true. Today was spent cataloguing auction catalogues (my first Full Level Cataloguing, and very attractive things to flick through, filled with paintings I can’t afford and odd owl figurines I wouldn’t want to) – then I went to a cake party (yum) and finally my Church Small Group had dinner together. The only thing I read today (aside from the auction catalogues) was my driving theory book… oh dear. Will tuck myself up with a good book soon.
Before I do, will turn my attention to this week’s question:
I’ve always wondered what other people do when they come across a word/phrase that they’ve never heard before. I mean, do they jot it down on paper so they can look it up later, or do they stop reading to look it up on the dictionary/google it or do they just continue reading and forget about the word?
Dictionaries! When I did my English Language section of my degree, one of my coursework pieces was on dictionaries – specifically the illustrative quotations which accompany definitions. It sounds dull… but was absolutely fascinating, and really fun. Sadly, when my computer decided that its hard drive was a little blasé and wiped itself, my essays disappeared. And that was one of the ones I hadn’t printed, except to hand in to The Powers That Be, so I shall never again know as much about dictionaries as I did then.
What I do know, however, is that I have a dictionary to hand whenever I’m reading a book. Well, not to hand – but on the shelf, and it is referred to often. Dictionary.com sometimes offers a hand, but there’s nothing quite like skimming through a real live dictionary, and having a sentence make sense.
Oddly, and irritatingly, there are certain words which I read over and over again, and look up over and over again, and which refuse to stick in my mind. Of course, none spring to mind now… but for a long time ‘importunate’ and ‘sedulous’ were two of these. They’d crop up time and again in books I read, and every time I was stumped… now, eventually, I know what they mean. But then there are words like ‘vicariously’, the meaning of which I always *thought* I knew, but turns out I didn’t…
Howsabout you? Do you ignore the words you don’t understand, or immediately scurry away to a dictionary, or note it down for later? Or are you just better than me, and haven’t encountered an unfamiliar word for years?!