In Homer's Odyssey, we read about nepenthe, which is "a drug to quiet all pain and strife, and bring forgetfulness of every ill."
So, something nepenthean makes you feel better by helping you forget your troubles.
nih PEN thee un
Part of speech:
(Adjectives are describing words, like “large” or “late.”
They can be used in two ways:
1. Right before a noun, as in “nepenthean entertainment.”
2. After a linking verb, as in "The entertainment was nepenthean.”)
The noun is "nepenthe," said "nih PEN thee."
How to use it:
This word is literary and a bit rare, but still useful for everyday situations.
You might describe a drink, a meal, some medicine, a bubble bath, an engaging movie or show, an evening of laughter with friends, and so on as nepenthean, or you could talk about something's nepenthean effect(s). Or just use the noun and call something a nepenthe.
Indulge the metaphor a bit more by talking about drinking, swallowing, imbibing, or quaffing whatever your nepenthe or nepenthean thing is.
Romeo starts out all lovesick over Rosaline, who doesn't like him back, but then he heads to a party and is overpowered by the nepenthean beauty of Juliet.
To me, problems often seem bigger late at night than they do in the morning. Maybe a good night's sleep is my nepenthe.
Look away from the screen to explain the definition in your own words. You’ll know you understand what "nepenthean" means when you can explain it without saying "blissful forgetting" or "drown your sorrows."
Think of a special food or activity that you love, and fill in the blanks: "After (some kind of stressful event,) I appreciate the nepenthean effects of _____."
Example: "After an exhausting day when my to-do list seems to conquer me rather than vice versa, I appreciate the nepenthean effects of cheese tortellini."
Spend at least 20 seconds occupying your mind with the game and quote below. Then try the review questions. Don’t go straight to the review now—let your working memory empty out first.
Playing With Words:
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A Point Well Made:
Wayne Dyer: “See the light in others and treat them as if that is all you see.”
1. The opposite of NEPENTHEAN is
2. Nepenthea, LLC wants to _____.
A. design and sell luxury watches
B. grow and sell marijuana for medical uses
C. offer construction cost estimating services
Answers are below.
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Disclaimer: Word meanings presented here are expressed in plain language and are limited to common, useful applications only. Readers interested in authoritative and multiple definitions of words are encouraged to check a dictionary. Likewise, word meanings, usage, and pronunciations are limited to American English; these elements may vary across world Englishes.
I first saw a form of today's word in "The Raven," a poem by Edgar Allan Poe that you're probably familiar with, especially if you were somewhat of an emo kiddo like me.
Other words we've examined that are tied closely to great poems include Xanadu and galumph.
And in case you're curious, in "The Raven," a bird flies into this guy's apartment and starts talking to him. (Just go with it.) The guy shouts that the bird was sent to him as a kind of magical potion to help him forget a girl (Lenore) he loved very much but is gone now. And the bird seems to say, "Nope." Check it out:
“Wretch,” I cried, “thy God hath lent thee—by these angels he hath sent thee
Respite—respite and nepenthe from thy memories of Lenore;
Quaff, oh quaff this kind nepenthe and forget this lost Lenore!”
Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.”
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