More Readings and Unknowns

From The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga:

rictus (n):

  1. the expanse of an open mouth, a bird’s beak, or similar structure.
  2. a gaping grimace: “his mouth gaping in a kind of rictus of startled alarm” (Richard Adams).

From Anna Karenina, the Pevear and Volokhonsky translation:

pharisaic (adj):

  1. (uppercase) of or pertaining to the Pharisees.
  2. (lowercase) practicing or advocating strict observance of external forms and ceremonies of religion or conduct without regard to the spirit; self-righteous; hypocritical.

trousseau (n): an outfit of clothing, household linen, etc., for a bride.

pell-mell (here defined as adverb, but can be noun and adjective):

  1. In a jumbled, confused manner; helter-skelter.
  2. In frantic disorderly haste; headlong.

roan (adj): having a chestnut, bay, or sorrel coat thickly sprinkled with white or gray: a roan horse.

roan (n):

    1. The characteristic coloring of a roan horse.
    2. A roan horse or other animal.
  1. A soft flexible sheepskin leather, often treated to resemble morocco and used in bookbinding.

beadle (n): a minor parish official formerly employed in an English church to usher and keep order during services.

chignon (n): a large, smooth twist, roll, or knot of hair, worn by women at the nape of the neck or the back of the head.

palpate (v): to examine by touch, especially for the purpose of diagnosing disease or illness.

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