Sunday, May 18, 2014

Word of the Day ...

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Hippodrome -

To conduct races, equestrian, pedestrian, or aquatic, or other contests, in which the result is prearranged by collusion between the managers and the contestants, in order to make gain through betting.
The Century Dictionary, Volume 4, 1895.

Much interest was manifested in the races on Saturday, as it was expected that they would be real genuine contests of speed, instead of what they proved, some very poor hippodroming. ... The fraud was so palpable and barefaced that the only wonder was that the judges didn’t send them all to the stable, declare the pools off, and teach these fellows a lesson that would last them for some time.
Daily Sentinel (Fort Wayne, Indiana) 18. Sep. 1878.

The original hippodromes were chariot-racing circuits of classical Greece (the term is from hippos, horse, plus dromos, a race or course). The term was imported from France to Britain in the early nineteenth century for a related spectacle and was later applied in Britain to a theater that offered a varied bill. Hippodromes, these days conventional theaters, survive in some British cities, notably London, Bristol and Birmingham.

Bonus word: Plasticarian

This word — it means a person who tries to avoid plastics — suddenly appeared from nowhere  in a British newspaper and has since been widely picked up by news outlets worldwide.

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