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Word of the Day
Friday, June 10, 2011

Definitions for umbra

  1. The invariable or characteristic accompaniment or companion of a person or thing.
  2. Shade; shadow.
  3. In astronomy, the complete shadow of an opaque body, as a planet, where the direct light from the source of illumination is completely cut off.

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Citations for umbra
She leaned over me, dark and mother-warm, and I could hardly breathe in her umbra of cigarettes and gin. Jonathan Strahan, Eidolon
The umbra - shade, shadow, uninvited guest - is invited in; as a dream, the guest becomes host to a sensuous pleasure that is all the more real for being an imitation, and all the more an artifice for being imaginal, "only" a dream. Patricia Cox Miller, Dreams in Late Antiquity: Studies in the Imagination of a Culture
Origin of umbra
1590-1600
Umbra is borrowed from the same word in Latin, meaning "shadow."