By Barrie Hardymon
I love to read the notes in the margins of used books -- it's like literary forensic work. It's even more telling to read a marked up dictionary -- especially when the dictionary in question belonged to the late David Foster Wallace. Slate has posted a complete list of words that Wallace circled in his dictionary; and a quick perusal has turned up something akin to FIVE that I actually recognize. (I was a Latin student, so Ablative Absolute was kind of a gimme.) Here are a few of my favorites -- new favorites, I should say.
Flitch: NOUN: A salted and cured side of bacon.
A longitudinal cut from the trunk of a tree.
One of several planks secured together to form a single beam.
Espalier: NOUN: A tree or shrub that is trained to grow in a flat plane against a wall, often in a symmetrical pattern.
A trellis or other framework on which an espalier is grown.
Relict: NOUN: Ecology An organism or species of an earlier time surviving in an environment that has undergone considerable change.
Something that has survived; a remnant.
*Yes, that's the archaic of enucleate.