A Word A Day : Turbid
Tuesday, 22nd April 2008 : Today's Word is ...
( Adjective )
Pronunciation : túr-bid
1. having sediment or foreign particles stirred up or suspended
2. confused and muddled
3. dense and cloudy or dark
4. deficient in clarity or purity
The two words are unrelated in form but can both describe water in their literal meanings (either opaque and muddy
in the case of turbid or swollen and overflowing
in the case of turgid) and can both describe literary styles in their figurative meanings. Turgid is the more common and means pompous and overcomplicated
(as in turgid prose), whereas turbid means confused and muddled
(as in turbid reasoning).
Latin turbidus, disordered, from turba, turmoil, probably from Greek turbē
cloudy, muddy, murky, roiled, roily, addled, addlepated, confounded, confused, confusional, muddle-headed, perplexed, hazy, smoggy
• Clear writers, like fountains, do not seem so deep as they are. The turbid
look the most profound.
• I leave a white and turbid
wake, pale waters, paler cheeks, where'er I sail.
• Carey stood for a few minutes and looked at it, it was turbid
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