Sunday, August 7, 2011


It took 3 months, exactly, but I have finally finished Infinite Jest. Here are a list of words I had to look up while reading the book.

- a cleansing with water or other liquid, especially as a religious ritual
Actaeon - A hunter who, for having seen Diana bathing, was changed by her into a stag and was torn to pieces by his own hounds
Aether - Ancient Greek personification of the clear upper air of the sky
Aleatory - Of or pertaining to accidental causes; of luck or chance
Anachronism - Something or someone that is not in its correct historical or chronological time
Anathema - A person or thing detested or loathed
Apercu - A hasty glance
Coalesce - To grow together
Crepuscular - Of, pertaining to, or resembling twilight; dim; indistinct
Cyanosis - Blueness or lividness of the skin, as from imperfectly oxygenated blood
Demimonde - A class of women who have lost their standing in respectable society because of indiscreet behaviour or sexual promiscuity
Dilettante - A person who takes up an art, activity, of subject merely for amusement
Dipsomania - An irresistible, typically periodic craving for an alcoholic drink
Dysautonomia - A rare inherited disorder of the autonomic nervous system
Epaulet - An ornamental shoulder piece worn on uniforms, chiefly by military officers
Ephebe - A young man, especially an ephebus
Fantod - A state of extreme nervousness or restlessness; the willies; fidgets
Fugue - Music. A polyphonic compresion based upon one, two, or more themes, which are enunciated by several voices or parts in turn, subjected to contrapuntal treatment, and gradually built up into a complex form having somewhat distinct divisions or stages of development and a marked climax at the end (what the fuck!?)
Ineluctable - Incapable of being evaded; inescapable
Imprecate - To invoke or call down (evil or curses), as upon a person
Leonine - Resembling or suggestive of a lion
Matriculate - To enroll in a college or university as a candidate for a degree
Mottle - To mark or diversify with spots or blotches of a different colour or shade
Nacre - Mother of Pearl
Nadir - The point on the celestial sphere directly beneath a given position or observer and diametrically opposite the zenith
Neuralgia - Sharp and paroxysmal pain along the course of a nerve
Obfuscate - To confuse, bewilder, or stupefy
Oculist - Optometrist
Ommatophore - A tentacle or movable stalk bearing an eye, as in certain snails
Osseous - Composed of, containing, or resembling bone
Parodic - Having or of the nature of a parody (d'uh)
Picayune - Of little value or account; small; trifling
Piebald - Having patches of black and white or of other colours
Puerile - Juvenile
Quincunx - An arrangement of five objects, as trees, in a square or rectangle, one at each corner and one in the middle
Sinistral - Of pertaining to, or on the left side
Sobriquet - A nickname
Solipsism - The theory that only the self exists, or can be proved to exist
Sulcus - A furrow or groove
Teratoid - Resembling a monster
Thanatophobia - An abnormal fear of death
Trochee - A foot of two syllables, a long followed by a short in quantitative meter, or a stressed followed by an unstressed in accentual meter
Wraith - An apparition of a living person supposed to portend his or her death

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