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  • Noun

propinquity

proh-PING-kwi-tee

Context
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The propinquity of the two neighboring farmers explains why they have so much in common: living so closely to each other gives them ample opportunity to influence each other. The propinquity or closeness of their respective small farms sparked a new idea in both of them. They decided to capitalize on this propinquity or nearness of location by merging the harvest of their separate farms to meet the needs of higher paying organic produce buyers.

Quiz: What is propinquity?

  • Opportunity caused by favorable circumstances.
  • The ability to influence another person.
  • Proximity or nearness to another.

Memory Hook
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Propinquity Promise Pinkie in Proximity (Pinkie Swear) Two friends make a promise by putting their pinkies in propinquity, or proximity, to each other.

Examples
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  • Fans of her acerbic humor may be hoping that the comedian has something special in store for an audience that lives in such propinquity to the powers she has repeatedly targeted. —The Washington Post
  • In the case of the pictures in “#nyc,” closeness involves not just a physical propinquity but also a kind of psychic insight into others’ hearts and minds. —The New Yorker
  • He calls it the “propinquity effect,” a theory in architecture that describes when people who don’t usually have the opportunity to meet are provided the space to connect—and become friends because of it, breaking down the “silos” that so often separate people by neighborhood, economic status, ethnicity and profession. —The Washington Post

Word Ingredients
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prop near
-ity state or quality

The propinquity of something is its “state or quality” of being “near” to another thing.

Word Constellation
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Propinquity