Word of the Day

Monday, March 12, 2001


\uh-VUHNG-kyuh-luhr\ , adjective;
Of or pertaining to an uncle.
Resembling an uncle, especially in kindness or indulgence.
Both uncle Frank and uncle Stephen Austen had made it a point of principle to be rigorously unsentimental in the discharge of their avuncular obligations.
-- David Nokes, Jane Austen: A Life
Thornton's reputation was that of a soft-hearted and avuncular veterinarian known for getting teary-eyed while listening to even slightly sentimental stories
-- Vicki Croke, "New leader of the MSPCA moves to tame budget woes", Boston Globe, September 20, 2003
A man with such a nice, avuncular personality would not blow up the world.
-- William Schneider, "The New Shape of American Politics", The Atlantic, January 1987
Avuncular comes from Latin avunculus, "maternal uncle."
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