Saturday, January 29, 2011

random vocab quiz from the depths of biobabbler's psyche

For those of you who've followed this blog somewhat closely, you may recall that occasionally biobabbler's brain flings words up from the recesses, requesting a definition, with the implied threat of "tell us what this is or it's going in the trash."

Today, mine came to me about 2 seconds after getting out of bed this morning, shuffling in my slippers, in the process of feeding the cats, squinting and trying not to run into walls.

The vocab-crew in my brain was very much awake. Today was a two-fer (don't know if I've ever had a two-fer before).

So I've decided to make this an occasional quiz, frequency and content dictated by the filing crew (data managers) in my brain.

WITHOUT looking it up, can any of you offer up definitions for these words?

1. propitiate (not bio word)

2. fistula (definitely bio word)

And please, even wild guesses are more welcome than thinly disguised re-wordings of Merriam-Webster. Take a stab at it! =)



  1. Not a clue, or even a wild guess really what the first one is, but fistula sounds like something medical to me - a growth?

  2. Oh. Fistula. Well, I know that one - a fistula is like a hole - I don't know about in people, but in cows they make permanent fistulas in their abdomens so researchers can sample rumen contents (and first year vet students can rummage around in there and catch the food as it's swallowed). I know horses can also get fistulous withers, but that looks more like an abscess to me, which I guess is kind of a hole.

    I have no idea what propitiate means. I'm going to look it up as soon as I post this. It sounds like precipitate, and I feel like they're related, but I'm not sure. :)

    Fun quiz!

  3. I thought fistula was a swelling, like an abscess, and propitiate was something like 'make recompense' or placate. Now I'll go look them up and feel horribly embarrassed.


Cool people write inside rectangles....