fileg (fileg) wrote,
fileg
fileg

in a word:

from the Futility Closet

lethologica
n. the inability to remember a word

In her 1989 textbook Cognition, psychologist Margaret Matlin notes that most people who read the definitions below find it hard to summon the words they refer to. How many can you name? I'll give the answers tomorrow.

1. An absolute ruler, a tyrant.
2. A stone having a cavity lined with crystals.
3. A great circle of the earth passing through the geographic poles and any given point on the earth's surface.
4. Worthy of respect or reverence by reason of age and dignity.
5. Shedding leaves each year, as opposed to evergreen.
6. A person appointed to act as a substitute for another.
7. Five offspring born at a single birth.
8. A special quality of leadership that captures the popular imagination and inspires unswerving allegiance.
9. The red coloring matter of the red blood corpuscles.
10. Flying reptile that was extinct at the end of the Mesozoic era.
11. A spring from which hot water, steam, or mud gushes out at intervals, found in Yellowstone National Park.
12. The second stomach of a bird, which has thick, muscular walls.
13. The green coloring matter found in plants.
14. The long-haired wild ox of central Asia, often domesticated as a beast of burden.
15. The art of speaking in such a way that the voice seems to come from another place.


answers inside
answers inside



Solution to In a Word:

1. An absolute ruler, a tyrant: DESPOT
2. A stone having a cavity lined with crystals: GEODE
3. A great circle of the earth passing through the geographic poles and any given point on the earth's surface: MERIDIAN
4. Worthy of respect or reverence by reason of age and dignity: VENERABLE
5. Shedding leaves each year, as opposed to evergreen: DECIDUOUS
6. A person appointed to act as a substitute for another: SURROGATE
7. Five offspring born at a single birth: QUINTUPLETS
8. A special quality of leadership that captures the popular imagination and inspires unswerving allegiance: CHARISMA
9. The red coloring matter of the red blood corpuscles: HEMOGLOBIN
10. Flying reptile that were extinct at the end of the Mesozoic era: PTERODACTYL
11. A spring from which hot water, steam, or mud gushes out at intervals, found in Yellowstone National Park: GEYSER
12. The second stomach of a bird, which has thick, muscular walls: GIZZARD
13. The green coloring matter found in plants: CHLOROPHYLL
14. The long-haired wild ox of central Asia, often domesticated as a beast of burden: YAK
15. The art of speaking in such a way that the voice seems to come from another place: VENTRILOQUISM


While holding myself to a timer, I could not retrieve the word surrogate. Why is that?

Aan ss usual, I squander my time over thinking - do they want a general answer (pterodactyl) or something more specific (Ramphorhyncus? Quetzalcoatlus?) I nearly missed meridian by thinking longitude and yak by thinking about Aurochs until *long haired* kicked in...
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