English: A multi-volume Latin dictionary (Egid...

English: A multi-volume Latin dictionary (Egidio Forcellini: Totius Latinitatis Lexicon, 1858–87) in a table in the main reading room of the University Library of Graz. Picture taken and uploaded on 15 Dec 2005 by Dr. Marcus Gossler. Español: Diccionario de latín (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Author Jennifer Weiner, in The New Republic, introduced me to a new word in her article “What Jonathan Franzen Misunderstands about Me.” The point isn’t the article and the Franzen-Weiner debate, but the new word! I was delighted to meet my new word, and now to introduce her to you.

Ensorcell, these are my Word Nerd friends. Fellow Word Nerds, meet my new friend, Ensorcell.

(She doesn’t mind being spelled with one l, by the way.)

Ensorcell comes from the Middle French ensorcerer. En- means, of course, “in” or “on.” In this case, it can also mean “make to become.” Sorcerer, not surprisingly, is the same root from which we get our English “sorcerer” and “sorcery.” It comes from Latin sors, meaning “lot, fate, chance, to join together, sort.” Interesting take on the word sorcery, yes?

And I’m not going to tell you any more!  See if you can use just that much information to use it properly in a sentence! You could also use ensorcellment, if you prefer her dressed up as noun instead of an adjective. But please, share your sentences in the comments section! Bonus points if you come up with some good synonyms.