Glossary: Grand Panjandrum

(translations of "The Grand Panjandrum" story)

The gratification of a prodigious appetite.
blizzard head
Someone who has blond hair.
A long-winded and verbose oration.
borborygmus (bohr" boh RIG muhs; bohr" buh RIG muhs) (s), (noun); borborygmi (bohr" boh RIG mi, bohr" boh RIG migh) (pl)
1. Rumblings or gurgling noises produced by the movements of gas in the tube or passage through which food passes and that can be heard from a distance: Whenever people hear borborygmi, then they are aware of the bowel sounds, the gurgling, rumbling, or growling noises from the abdomen caused by the muscular contractions of peristalsis, the process that moves the contents of the stomach and the intestines downward.

Peristalsis is the rippling motion of muscles in the digestive tract. In the stomach, this motion mixes food with gastric juices, turning it into a thin liquid.

Bowel sounds are normal. In fact, their absence might indicate intestinal obstruction or constipation.

Some borborygmi, or intestinal sounds, are often present in cases of gastroenteritis (inflammation of the stomach and intestines) and diarrhea (increased fluidity, frequency, or volume of bowel movements).

Most of the time, the growl of the borborygmi is gas moving in the digestive system, usually in the intestines rather than the stomach.

When borborygmi, or gurgulations,

Interrupt my conversations,

I simply shrug and say, "It's true–

My belly has an opinion too."

—Willy Brakewynde
From There's A Word For It!
C.H. Elster, page 210.
2. Etymology: borborygmus has been rumbling around in the English language for more than 200 years. Its earliest known use in English dates back to 1796. The word arrived from New Latin, but it traces its origin back to the Greek borborygmos; from the verb borboryzein, "to rumble".

—This entry is primarily compiled from information located in:

1. The American Medical Association Home Medical Encyclopedia;
Volume One; Medical Editor, Charles B. Clayman, MD;
Random House; New York; 1989; page 195.
2. ABC's of the Human Body; The Reader's Digest Association, Inc;
Pleasantville, New York; 1987; page 233.
To caress playfully.
A peaceful, painless death.
A person with the compulsion to hold public office.
Characterized by wanton disregard of facts.
Giving or getting intense pleasure.
An iron triangle rung to call lumberjacks to meals.
A chair by the fire.
1. Menacing, warning, or threatening.
2. Threatening or foreshadowing evil or tragic developments.
A learned fool.
A member of a dominating, privileged group.
A pompous, pretentious official with considerable power which is likely to be used unwisely.

The Grand Panjandrum Story translaton.

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