U

ubiquitous: Appearing everywhere. From Latin “ubique”=everywhere + “-ous”=abounding with or full of.

uke: Common short form of “ukulele,” a small Hawaiian 4-string guitar. From Hawaiian “uku”=flea + “lele”=jumping – fingers jump like fleas!

uliginous: Of an oozy, slimy, or watery nature. From Latin “uligin”=moisture + “-ous” suffix that turns nouns to adjectives.

umbrage: Displeasure, annoyance, offence, or resentment. From Old French “ombrage” < Latin “umbra”=shadow.

umbrella: Collapsible shade to protect from the weather, usually the rain but originally sun. From Italian “ombrello” < Latin “umbra”=shade

unbosom: To reveal your troubles and thereby get relief. From Old English “un-“=to release + “bosm”=human breast or seat of emotions.

uncouth: Lacking refinement or cultivation or taste. From Old English “uncuth” < “un”=not + “cuth”=known or familiar.

ungual: Related to a claw or a nail. From Latin “unguis”=nail, claw + suffix “-al”=pertaining to.

universe: The whole of existence. From Latin “universus”=taken as one < “uni”=one + “vertere”=to turn. Literally “turned into one.”

urban: Pertaining to town or city lifestyle. From Latin “urbanus”=city life < “urbs”=city.

urette: Dried animal urine in chalky soil. Old French “urine” + “-ette”=diminutive suffix < Latin “urina”=urine.

urology: The study of urine; hence the study of the urinal tract. From Greek “ouro”=urine.

usurp: Take someone’s power or position unlawfully. Old French “usurper”=take something wrongfully < Latin “usurpare”=to seize for use.

utensil: Object for domestic use (e.g. spatula, fork, whisk). From Latin “utensilis”=fit for use < “uti”=to use.

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