01 May 2013

Word: Maculate


Verb. To spot, stain or soil.
Adjective. Spotted or blotched; stained or impure.

Hence immaculate: unspotted, pure, undefiled.

According to the OED the first usage is in a legal roll from 1432-50, shortly followed by Caxton in 1481. Sadly maculate is now confined to medical and zoological usage.

The Panther (or Rusty-Spotted) Genet (Genetta maculata)

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