A dictionary of words that I have learned during my readings. Word of warning: ⚠️ There may be more than one definition, but I want to make sure it’s as simple as possible. I have put the most common meanings or the meanings related to what I was reading.

Accipiter n. a hawk of a group distinguished by short, broad wings and relatively long legs, adapted for fast flight in wooded country. Accipiter is a genus of birds of prey in the family Accipitridae. With 51 recognized species it is the most diverse genus in its family. Most species are called goshawks or sparrowhawks, although almost all New World species are simply known as hawks

Ad Litem adj. appointed to act in a lawsuit on behalf of a child or other person who is not considered capable of representing themselves

Alacrity n. brisk and cheerful readiness; willingness; liveliness

Altricial adj. hatched or born in an underdeveloped state and requiring care and feeding by the parents (of a young bird or other animal)

Arriviste n. an ambitious or ruthlessly self-seeking person, especially one who has recently acquired wealth or social status

Attrition n. the act of weakening by constant harassment, abuse, or attack OR a reduction in numbers usually as a result of resignation, retirement, or death

Augur n. (in ancient Rome) a religious official who observed natural signs, especially the behavior of birds, interpreting these as an indication of divine approval or disapproval of a proposed action. v. to foretell, to predict

Bate v. to reduce the force or intensity of (restrain); to take away (deduct)

Beneficent adj. doing or producing good; per morning acts of kindness and charity

Beribboned adj. decorated with many ribbons

Bivouac n. a military encampment made with tents or improvised shelters, usually without shelter or protection from enemy fire

Creance n.  a long fine cord attached to a hawk’s leash to prevent escape during training.

Crepuscular adj. relating to or resembling twilight; occurring or active during twilight

Crine v. a Scottish word meaning to shrink or shrivel

Doyenne n. a woman who is the most respected or prominent person in a particular field

Epistolary adj. “written as a series of documents”- it’s usually letters but can be diary entries, newspaper clippings etc.

Foolscap n. a sheet of paper that is similar in size to a sheet of legal paper (more British than American english) OR a cap or hood usually with bells worn by jesters

Genuflect v. to bend the knee; to touch the knee to the floor or ground especially in worship

Gloam n. twilight, dusk

Henequen n. an agave, a plant species native to southern Mexico and Guatemala

Imbroglio n. an extremely confused, complicated, or embarrassing situation

Innocuous adj. not harmful or offensive

Insouciant adj. showing a casual lack of concern; indifferent

Intimation n. an indication or hint that something is likely to be happen or true; an indirect suggestion

Lugubrious adj. looking or sounding sad and dismal

Menagerie n. a collection of wild animals kept in captivity for exhibition.

Obfuscate v. to confuse, bewilder, or stupefy; to obscure the meaning of something; to be evasive or unclear

Palimpsest n. writing material (such as a parchment or tablet) used one or more times after earlier writing has been erased

Portent n. a sign or warning that something, especially something momentous or calamitous, is likely to happen; an omen

Polemic n. an aggressive attack on or refutation of the opinions or principles of another; something that stirs up controversy by having a negative opinion, usually aimed at a particular group

Psychopomp n. (in Greek mythology) a guide of souls to the place of the dead

Precocial adj. hatched or born in an advanced state and able to feed itself almost immediately (of a young bird or other animal)

Proprioceptive adj. Relating to stimuli that are produced and perceived within an organism, especially those connected with the position and movement of the body

Pullet n. a young hen, especially one less than one year old

Pullulate v. to multiply or spread prolifically or rapidly

Rood n. a cross or crucifix symbolizing the cross on which Jesus Christ dies; a large crucifix on a beam or screen at the entrance to the chancel of a church

Sangfroid n. self-possession or imperturability especially under strain/composure or coolness shown in danger or under trying circumstances

Susurration adj. whispering, murmuring, or shushing sounds

Sybaritic adj. fond of sensuous luxury or pleasure; self-indulgent