Word of the Day

Monday, March 18, 2013

qualm

\kwahm, kwawm\ , noun;
1.
an uneasy feeling or pang of conscience as to conduct; compunction: He has no qualms about lying.
2.
a sudden feeling of apprehensive uneasiness; misgiving: a sudden qualm about the success of the venture.
3.
a sudden sensation or onset of faintness or illness, especially of nausea.
Quotes:
A soft qualm, regret, flowed down his backbone, increasing.
-- James Joyce, Ulysses, 1922
“Uh nuh nuh nuh,” Bosco told her, wagging a finger as if she'd spoken this rogue qualm aloud.
-- Jennifer Egan, A Visit from the Goon Squad, 2010
Origin:
The etymology of qualm is uncertain. It may come from the Old English cwealm, which means "torment," "pain," and "injury," but scholars believe there is not enough evidence to assume a direct connection between these terms.
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