Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Koinonia – Wordplay Wednesday™ 06/13/18

Bzzzzzzz … “Bee” a Good Wordsmith 

When is a word not in the dictionary, but still holds its head high in wordsmith society? When it’s the winning word in the 91st Scripps National Spelling Bee .. or … when your earmarked, thumb-worn, dusty dictionary is out of date. This week’s word is both …

KOINONIA: Wikipedia – “a transliterated form of the Greek word, κοινωνία, which means communion, joint participation; the share which one has in anything, participation, a gift jointly contributed, a collection, a contribution, etc. It identifies the idealized state of fellowship and unity that should exist within the Christian church, the Body of Christ.” [WW #168]

Wiki’s definition of koinonia differs from the short meaning, “a body of religious believers,” that accompanied news articles touting young Karthik Nemmani’s prestigious spelling bee victory on May 31, 2018. Of course, it’s more comprehensive.

Alas, koinonia was not in my trusty word tome! As a modest wordsmith curious about this year’s winning word, I not only wanted to learn more about its meaning, but just what is the National Spelling Bee’s official word source?

It took a little scouring on their site, but I finally spotted the “final authority and sole source for the spelling of words” that they rely on: Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary.

Sadly, of the seven sample words a news report listed that were misspelled in the competition leading up to the final, only one was in my old beat-up Webster’s: pseudepigrapha (sōō’dɘ pigʹrɘ fɘ) pl.n. – a group of early writings not included in the biblical canon or the Apocrypha, some of which were falsely ascribed to biblical characters.

Guess it’s time for a new dictionary.
Word Challenge: KOINONIA. Think how many Greek words have been welcomed as “joint participation” in the English language, while you fit koinonia into your week of worldly writings.

Learning knows no prejudices or boundaries, and it isn’t fattening! Expanding your mind is a no-cost simple joy. Do you feel that way too? Share your comments below, about Wordplay Wednesday or learning in general. What’s your inspiration?

Write first for yourself … only then can you write for others. (L.Rochelle) 


LinDee Rochelle is a writer and editor by trade, and an author by way of Rock & Roll. She has published two books (of three) in her Blast from Your Past series, available on Amazon (eBook and print): Book 1Rock & Roll Radio DJs: The First Five Years 1954-1959; and Book 2Rock & Roll Radio DJs: The Swinging Sixties. Coming soon, … The Psychedelic Seventies!


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