So, just did a review of Joseph Conrad’s Under Western Eyes (and another, truly atrocious book) – next up on this site. UWE had me reaching for the dictionary on three occasions- buckram, carmine (I kind of knew) and vaticinated-
“He felt his lips go stiff like buckram, and instead of a reassuring smile only achieved an uncertain grimace.
(Conrad, 1911: 62)
Buckram is a stiff cloth, made of cotton, and still occasionally linen or horse hair, which is used to cover and protect books. Buckram can also be used to stiffen clothes. Modern buckrams have been stiffened by soaking in a substance, usually now pyroxylin, to fill the gaps between the fibres
She disregarded it. Her carmine lips vaticinated with an extraordinary rapidity. The liberating spirit would use arms before which rivers would part like Jordan, and ramparts fall down like the walls of Jericho. The deliverance from bondage would be effected by plagues and by signs, by wonders and by war. The women….
Carmine (/ˈkɑːrmɪn/ or /ˈkɑːrmaɪn/), also called cochineal, cochineal extract, crimson lake or carmine lake, natural red 4, C.I. 75470, or E120, is a pigment of a bright-red color obtained from the aluminium salt of carminic acid; it is also a general term for a particularly deep-red color.
Vaticinate – foretell the future.