What is the meaning, origin and usage of word ‘Brandish’?

Meaning: A verb, brandish means to wave or shake something aggressively in a threatening manner.

Origin: The earliest usage dates back to the 14th century. The word has a Germanic origin. It is a descendant of the Middle English word 'braundisshen' which traces its root to the Anglo-French 'brant, a Germanic word meaning 'sword'.

Usage: The crowd went silent as the Prince brandished his sword.

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What is the meaning, origin and usage of word ‘Privy’?

Meaning: The word "privy" can be used as an adjective and a noun. When used as an adjective, it means sharing in the knowledge of something private or secret. It is usually followed by the preposition "to". As a noun, it means a toilet located in a shed outside a house or building.

Origin: The term entered Middle English in the early 13th Century from Old French prive meaning "intimate or private place" which in turn came from Latin privatus meaning "private or personal."

Usage: Ram is not privy to the discussions of the top management.

The farm house is a privy place for the writer to relax and think about his next plot.

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Which is the world's largest flower?

Rafflesia Arnoldii, or the corpse flower, is the largest individual flower on Earth. It is a species of flowering plant in the parasitic genus Rafflesia found in the rain-forests of Sumatra and Borneo. With a strong and unpleasant odour of decaying flesh, it grows to a diameter of around one metre and weighs up to 11 kilograms. The buds of these flowers are about 30 cm wide and are very large and cabbage- like, in maroon or dark brown colour.

The flower is in fact a pot with five petals with striking red-brick and spotted cream colours, which warmly welcome carrion flies that are hungry for detritus. But the plant is now facing the threat of extinction and its existence is limited to places like Sumatra, Borneo, Thailand and the Philippines, because of depredations caused by humans and its own internal biology.

In terms of survival, everything seems to be against Rafflesia. Firstly, its seeds are difficult to germinate. As a result, it sustains entirely as a parasite on just one type of vine. This is dangerous as it can't survive without the vine. Apart from this, once it has acquired its nutrition by being a parasite, the plant breaks out as a flower bud, swells up over several months, and then bursts into flower. But even after this arduous growth phase, most of the flower buds perish before blooming. Even after blooming, Rafflesia can last only a few days, and is forced to pollinate in this short period of time. But the chances of pollination are very rare as the numbers of plants are decreasing steadily.

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What makes King Fahd International Airport special?

Named after the former King of Saudi Arabia Fahd ibn Abdulaziz, the King Fahd International Airport of Saudi Arabia is the largest airport in the world in terms of area. The area of the entire airport property is approximately 776 square kilometres, with an airport building of around m². Situated 31 km away from the city, the airport has three terminal buildings.

It was the U.S. airbase during the Gulf War, but now it oversees commercial operations since 28 November 1999 and has been able to provide connections to 43 destinations. Before the King Fahd International Airport came into existence, the primary airport serving the region was the Dhahran International Airport. It was extremely busy then, but now it has been assigned for military use and is now known as the King Abdulaziz Air Base. The Dammam Airports Company, also known as DACO, has been operating and managing the King Fahd International Airport since July 1, 2017.

It is the third largest airport in the kingdom in terms of passenger volume, that is, more than 10 million passengers use King Airport every year.

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What is the meaning, origin and usage of word ‘Relief’?

Meaning: The word relief corresponds to a feeling of reassurance and relaxation following release from anxiety or distress. It can also be used to denote financial or practical assistance given to those in special need or difficulty.

Origin: The word has been around since the 14th Century and is derived from Anglo-French relif from Old French relief. The meaning "aid to impoverished persons" is attested from around 1400 and from 19th Century it especially specified assistance from governments.

Apart from a brief spike in usage in the first half of the 20th Century, the usage of this word has remained stable over the last 200 years or so.

Usage: The classroom heaved a collective sigh of relief when the teacher announced that the test would be held later.

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