Word to the Wise: Expedient

An “expedient” (ik-SPEE-dee-unt) – from the Latin for “to make ready” – is something contrived or used to meet an urgent need.

Example (as used by Theodore Roosevelt in a 1918 article for The Atlantic): “If, when assailed by the ostrich, the man stands erect, he is in great danger. But by the simple expedient of lying down, he escapes all danger. In such case, the bird may step on him, or sit on him; his clothes will be rumpled and his feelings injured; but he will suffer no bodily harm. I know various men… who have had this experience.”