Words of the Day: Crescere and Accouterment

As a writer it’s important I have a large vocabulary, so I’ve decided to read through the dictionary. To keep me accountable, I will post my favorite words from each dictionary page. Definitions come from Webster’s New World Dictionary of American English, Third College Edition, 1988.

Let’s start with a root word and grow our vocabulary from there.

Crescere Latin for “to come forth, grow”. It’s inchoative (denoting the beginning of an action) for creare (to create)It is a root for accrete (to grow by being added to 2 to grow together; adhere) and accrue (an intransitive verb meaning “1 to come as a natural growth, advantage, or right (to2 to be added periodically as an increase; said esp. of interest on money,” as well as a transitive verb meaning “to accumulate periodically as an increase”).
It also has ties to words like crescent, create, and cereal. The Indo-European base for creare is *kre-, a variant of *ker-, to grow, cause to grow.

 

Accouterment or accoutrement are just cool sounding words (because they’re French) for a personal outfit, clothes, or dress. Skipping to the end of the etymology (or really the beginning but it’s the end of the listing) you get the Latin words con- (together) and suere (sew).