Quadrivial Quandary:  Logophiles, Rejoice!  Each day we give you four unusual words.  Can you fit them all in one illustrative sentence?

Today's attempts to resolve the Quandary (login or register to compose yours):


Before drinking from the pierian spring of Turkish literature, English-speaking students must orientate themselves to a different use of the Latin alphabet, where the ‘c’ is pronounced as a hard ‘j’ and diacritics change or even seem to delete other familiar consonants; then comes the rather onerous task of learning the language itself, especially challenging in its agglutinative structure; but finally the determined enthusiast will be fluent enough to be exhilarated by a dazzling tradition that ranges from the free-verse guru Nâzım Hikmet to the man-in-the-street revolution of the Garip movement to the abstract delights of the “Second New” movement.

(by TheMagicalExplodingUnicorns)
The Quandary for today, Sunday, April 30, 2017, consists of:
  • pierian
  • exhilarate
  • orientate
  • diacritic
Challenge: use all four words together in one illustrative sentence.

Since September 2009, word lovers have offered 6366 sentences — each one a surprise — to QQ's unique and growing library. Explore earlier Quandaries through our word list or the calendar below. View yesterday's QQ resolutions or pick a day at random.

Definitions Of Today's Words:

adjective: Relating to learning or poetry.
  1. (transitive) To cheer, to cheer up, to gladden, to make happy.
  2. (transitive) To excite, to thrill.

Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for April 30, 2017 is:

orientate • \OR-ee-un-tayt\  • verb

1 : to set or arrange in a definite position especially in relation to the points of the compass

2 : to acquaint with the existing situation or environment

3 : to direct (as a book or film) toward the interests of a particular group


The program is designed to orientate new students to the college and community.

"… the conference’s focus was orientated toward the production side of organic farming, which is most beneficial to individual farmers." — Nathan J. Tohtsoni, The Gallup (New Mexico) Independent, 28 Feb. 2017

Did you know?

Orientate is a synonym of orient, and it has attracted criticism as a consequence. Orient, which dates from the early 18th century, is in fact the older of the two verbs—orientate joined the language in the mid-19th century. Both can mean "to cause to face toward the east" and, not surprisingly, they are related to the noun Orient, meaning "the East." Both also have broader meanings that relate to setting or determining direction or position, either literally or figuratively. Some critics dislike orientate because it is one syllable longer than orient, but you can decide for yourself how important that consideration is to you. Personal choice is the primary deciding factor, although orientate tends to be used more often in British English than it is in American English.

diacritic: a mark, point, or sign added or attached to a letter or character to distinguish it from another of similar form, to give it a particular phonetic value, to indicate stress, etc., as a cedilla, tilde, circumflex, or macron.

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