Word of the Day

Saturday, November 06, 1999

pusillanimous

\pyoo-suh-LAN-uh-muhs\ , adjective;
1.
Lacking in courage and resolution; contemptibly fearful; cowardly.
Quotes:
Evil, unspeakable evil, rose in our midst, and we as a people were too weak, too indecisive, too pusillanimous to deal with it.
-- Kevin Myers, "An Irishman's Diary", Irish Times, October 20, 1999
Under the hypnosis of war hysteria, with a pusillanimous Congress rubber-stamping every whim of the White House, we passed the withholding tax.
-- Vivien Kellems, Toil, Taxes and Trouble
You are now anxious to form excuses to yourself for a conduct so pusillanimous.
-- Ann Radcliffe, The Italian
Origin:
Pusillanimous comes from Late Latin pusillanimis, from Latin pusillus, "very small, tiny, puny" + animus, "soul, mind."
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