Monday, April 28, 2008

chimera -- a she-goat turned into illusion

chimera (ki-MEER-uh, ky-) noun
1. A fanciful fabrication; illusion.
2. An organism having genetically different tissues.

[After Chimera, a fire-breathing female monster in Greek mythology who had a lion's head, a goat's body, and a serpent's tail. From Greek khimaira (she-goat), ultimately from the Indo-European root ghei- (winter) that is the ancestor of words such as chimera (literally a female animal that is one winter, or one year old), hibernate, and the Himalayas, from Sanskrit him (snow) + alaya (abode).]

"The government subsidies [for bio-fuel] may quickly dry up once policymakers face up to the reality of their euphoric chimera, and food shortages threaten political stability and national security."
-- Abdullah A. Dewan; Fuel Versus Food; The Daily Star (Dhaka, Bangladesh); Apr 24, 2008.

No comments: