The Wager

The saga of Jospar The Starflyer and Kasceto The Ruler begins.



Join Jospar on his journey -- As His Story Continues.



Roscoe pits Jospar against the dangerous Kasceto.


Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day

16 December 2018

Free daily dose of word power from Merriam-Webster's experts
  • vitiate

    Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day for December 16, 2018 is:

    vitiate • \VISH-ee-ayt\  • verb

    1 : to make faulty or defective : impair

    2 : to debase in moral or aesthetic status

    3 : to make ineffective


    Some feared that the superintendent's decision to reinstate the students would vitiate the authority of the principal who suspended them in the first place.

    "Convected heating essentially is the heating of the air itself and it warms the walls and furnishings only slightly, as turning on and off a convector heater will show. However it may also be argued that this essentially vitiates the recycled air, causes dryness and often physical discomfort." — James Le Fanu, The Telegraph (UK), 18 Mar. 2016

    Did you know?

    Here's one for word puzzle lovers—and anyone allured by alliteration. The sentence "Vivian vituperated the vicious villain for valuing vice over virtue" contains three words that derive from the same Latin source as vitiate. Can you identify all three? If you picked vituperate (a verb meaning "to scold"), vicious, and vice, your puzzle prowess is beyond reproach. Like vitiate, all three descend from the Latin noun vitium, meaning "fault" or "vice."

  • nidus

    Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day for December 15, 2018 is:

    nidus • \NYE-dus\  • noun

    1 : a nest or breeding place; especially : a place or substance in an animal or plant where bacteria or other organisms lodge and multiply

    2 : a place where something originates, develops, or is located


    The neighborhood had long been a nidus of crime and vice, but community policing and other interventions have done much to reduce the crime rate in recent years.

    "Ancient cities grew up along navigable rivers—think Cairo, Rome, Paris and London. In the 19th century, railroad stations were the nidus for Chicago, Denver, and Sacramento." — Alison Stuebe, The News & Observer (Raleigh, North Carolina), 20 Mar. 2017

    Did you know?

    Nidus literally means "nest" in Latin, and some of its relatives in English suggest this connection in a straightforward way. For example, we have nidification for the process of building a nest, and nidicolous, meaning "reared in a nest." But nidus itself, when used as an English word, is apt to refer to a place where bacteria lodge and multiply. Consequently, the extended use of nidus in English often has a negative connotation referring to a source of undesirable opinions or behaviors.

  • zibeline

    Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day for December 14, 2018 is:

    zibeline • \ZIB-uh-leen\  • noun

    : a soft lustrous wool fabric with mohair, alpaca, or camel's hair


    "It's a simple, elegant design: high-collar, buttons, long sleeves, with lace and a sheer bodice. Its fabric catches the light very delicately—Bridges found the thick zibeline in London." — Hunter Harris, Vulture, 5 Jan. 2018

    "The second gown is a more structured design of either silk zibeline or silk taffeta, with hand-embroidered silk thread and Swarovski crystals in three different sizes." — Joyce Chen, The Knot, 7 May 2018

    Did you know?

    Though zibeline is woven from the hair of alpacas, camels, or Angora goats, its name actually traces back to a Slavic word for the sable, a small mammal related to the weasel. The Slavic term was adopted into Old Italian, and from there it passed to Middle French, then on to English in the late 1500s. English zibeline originally referred to the sable or its fur, but in the 19th century it developed a second sense, applying to a soft, smooth, slightly furry material woven from a mixture of animal hairs. It's especially suited to women's suits and coats, or, as a fashion columnist in the December 6, 1894 issue of Vogue observed, "Zibeline... makes an exceedingly pretty, warm theatre cloak, not too fine to be crushed into the small one-chair space."