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Editor at Large

Just what does za mean? Or qi? Or jo?

In the interests of not feeling guilty when you make obscure but point-gobbling plays in “Words With Friends,” we offer to you a dictionary.

It’s a dictionary of about a dozen of those small and strange words that often feature letters worth lots of points: z, q, j and x.

If you play “Words With Friends” on your phone or other device, or if you play “Scrabble,” you will know what we’re talking about: words such as za and qi and jo. Words that can net you about 40 or 50 points and a nice lead against your opponent.

Herewith then, is a dictionary of words you will never ever see except when playing word games. The source is www.dictionary.com, and many of the words are variations of other words.

Za: Slang for pizza.

Jo: Beloved one, darling, sweetheart.

Qi: Variant spelling of chi, which means vital energy believed to circulate round the body in currents.

Qat: Variant spelling of kat or khat, which means an evergreen shrub, Catha edulis, of Arabia and Africa, the leaves of which are used as a narcotic when chewed or made into a beverage.

Xi: The 14th letter of the Greek alphabet.

Xu: An aluminum coin and monetary unit of Vietnam.

Djin: Variant spelling of jinn, which means any of a class of spirits, lower than the angels, capable of appearing in human and animal forms and influencing humankind for either good or evil.

Adz: An axlike tool, for dressing timbers roughly, with a curved, chisel-like steel head mounted at a right angle to the wooden handle.

Suq: Variant spelling of suk, which means -- especially in Arab nations -- the market, especially the traditional bazaar.

Hm: Variant spelling of hmm: an interjection typically used to express thoughtful absorption, hesitation, doubt or perplexity.

Sh: Variant spelling of shh: an interjection used to urge silence.

Ki: The Sumerian goddess personifying Earth, the counterpart of the Akkadian Aruru.

Ka: A spiritual entity, an aspect of the individual, believed to live within the body during life and to survive it after death.

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