Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for July 20, 2020 is:
derelict • DAIR-uh-likt • adjective
1 : abandoned especially by the owner or occupant; also : run-down
2 : lacking a sense of duty : negligent
“On Tuesday, crews … were busy using excavators to tear down derelict buildings on the two sites to make way for future construction.” — Bea Lewis, The New Hampshire Union Leader, 27 May 2020
“But the building suffered additional roof damage in late fall, triggering an emergency demolition that rocked the preservation community and prompted anger against derelict landlords. It also prompted renewed efforts by the city to crack down on absentee and neglectful landlords.” — Jonathan D. Epstein, The Buffalo (New York) News, 7 May 2020
Did you know?
The Latin verb relinquere, meaning “to leave behind,” left behind a few English derivatives, including derelict. Something derelict has been left behind, or at least appears that way. In another sense, someone who is derelict leaves behind or neglects their duties or obligations. Another descendant of relinquere is relinquish, meaning “to leave behind,” “to give up,” or “to release.” Relic is another example of a word that ultimately comes from relinquere. Relics, in the original sense of the term, referred to things treasured for their association with a saint or martyr—that is, objects saints and martyrs had left behind. Relinquere also gives English its name for the containers or shrines which hold relics, reliquary.