Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Word of the day: purlieu

The word of the day is purlieu:
  1. purlieus, environs or neighborhood.
  2. a place where one may range at large; confines or bounds.
  3. a person's haunt or resort.
  4. an outlying district or region, as of a town or city.
  5. a piece of land on the edge of a forest, originally land that, after having been included in a royal forest, was restored to private ownership, though still subject, in some respects, to the operation of the forest laws.

"Anthroplogy, he lamented, 'is particularly attractive to humankind, and for this reason the untrained are constantly venturing upon its purlieus; and since each heedless adventurer leads a rabble of followers, it behooves those who have at heart the good of science...to bell the blind leaders of the blind.'"

 - W. J. McGee, as quoted by Charles Mann in 1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus

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