Emily Dickinson Lexicon
Lexicon: auburn – auditor
auburn, adj. [OFr < L. alburnus, whitish, nearly white; later, metathesis of r and n led to a folk etymology of aubrun < brennan, burn, brown.]
Mahogany; golden brown; brownish-red; nut-colored.
Auburn, proper n. [OFr < L. alburnus, nearly white; see auburn, adj.]
Autumn; Fall; season when leaves change color and fall off; [word play; see auburn, adj.] red, brown, or gold-colored leaves; [fig.] death; grave site; [word play] Mount Auburn cemetery in Cambridge, Massachusetts (see ED letters); allusion to a 1770 poem “Deserted Village” by Oliver Goldsmith: “Sweet Auburn, loveliest village of the plain.”
auction, n. [L. augēre, increase; sell by increase of bids.] (webplay: sale).
Hawking; bargaining; public trade; transfer of property to the highest bidder; [fig.] degradation; cheapening.
auctioneer, n. [L. auctionarius.] (webplay: sale).
Dealer; peddler; merchant; salesman; one who conducts sales by seeking the highest bid; [kenning phrase “Auctioneer of Parting”] death.
audacious, adj. [L. audax, bold, daring.]
Bold; brazen; impudent; disrespectful; impetuous; irreverent; presumptuous; rash; hasty; heedless; impulsive; foolishly unprepared.
audacity, n. [see audacious, adj.]
Pomposity; arrogance; presumption; nerve; reckless courage; lack of concern about what others think.
audible (-er), adj. [Med. L. < L. audīre, to hear.] (webplay: ear, hear, heard; loud enough).
Discernable; clearly heard; perceptible to the ear; sufficient in volume to hear.
audience (-s), n. [Fr. < L. audīre, to hear.] (webplay: sounds).
- Assembly for entertainment; people who gather to hear a program; group of people who meet to see a show.
- Group of observers; assembly of listeners and viewers; persons within hearing; assembly of listeners; auditory; [fig.] group of creatures in nature.
- Judgment; judicial hearing; ecclesiastical court in front of auditors; [fig.] judgment day interview.
- Court; place where an archbishop considers consecrations, elections, institutions, marriages, and so forth.
- Formal interview; communication between a superior and an inferior.
audit (audits), v. [L. audīre, to hear.]
Examine; probe; verify; adjust the account of.
auditor (-s), n. [OF < L. audīre, to hear.]
Listener; audience; [word play] accountant; finance examiner; official whose duty it is to verify accounts by reference to vouchers; one who has power to disallow improper charges.