Word of the Day

Friday, April 12, 2002

apposite

\AP-uh-zit\ , adjective;
1.
Being of striking appropriateness and relevance; very applicable; apt.
Quotes:
As we survey Jewish history as a whole from the vantage point of the late twentieth century, Judah Halevi's phrase "prisoner of hope" seems entirely apposite. The prisoner of hope is sustained and encouraged by his hope, even as he is confined by it.
-- Jane S. Gerber (Editor), The Illustrated History of the Jewish People
Suppose, for example, that in a theoretical physics seminar we were to explain a very technical concept in quantum field theory by comparing it to the concept of aporia in Derridean literary theory. Our audience of physicists would wonder, quite reasonably, what is the goal of such a metaphor--whether or not it is apposite--apart from displaying our own erudition.
-- Alan D. Sokal and Jean Bricmont, Fashionable Nonsense: Postmodern Intellectuals' Abuse of Science
The author warns against doubling freely-bid contracts on the strength of a wealth of high cards, since the opponents usually have compensating distributional values. He gives the diagramed example, which is decidedly humorous though not entirely apposite.
-- Alan Truscott, "Bridge", New York Times, September 18, 1995
Origin:
Apposite comes from Latin appositus, past participle of apponere, "to set or put near," from ad-, "to, toward" + ponere, "to put, to place."
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