blink v. nictate v. wink

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hhtt21

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The studio was aquarium of light; the woman and the girl blinked in the glare."

Can we say following instead of original?

1) The studio was aquarium of light; the woman and the girl nictated in the glare.

2) The studio was aquarium of light; the woman and the girl winked in the glare.

Source:
Second Deadly Sin by by Lawrence Sanders.

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Boris Tatarenko

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If my memory serves me correctly the verb "wink" means to close and open one eye quickly, typically to indicate that something is a joke or a secret or as a signal of affection or greeting. As for the word "nictate" I've never seen it, so I cannot simply help you with it. Wait for native speakers anyway.
 

GoesStation

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The studio was an aquarium of light; the woman and the girl blinked in the glare."

Can we say following instead of original?

1) The studio was aquarium of light; the woman and the girl nictated in the glare.

2) The studio was aquarium of light; the woman and the girl winked in the glare.

Source:
Second Deadly Sin by by Lawrence Sanders.

Thank you.

No. Nictate is a technical term which would be technically correct but very unnatural. To wink means to close one eye while looking at another person in order to communicate an idea.
 

hhtt21

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No. Nictate is a technical term which would be technically correct but very unnatural. To wink means to close one eye while looking at another person in order to communicate an idea.

Then even wink and blink are not the same in meaning, aren't they?

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emsr2d2

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You wink with one eye at a time.
You blink with both eyes at the same time.

If you wink, one eye is open and one is shut.
If you blink, both eyes are shut.
 

hhtt21

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If my memory serves me correctly the verb "wink" means to close and open one eye quickly, typically to indicate that something is a joke or a secret or as a signal of affection or greeting. As for the word "nictate" I've never seen it, so I cannot simply help you with it. Wait for native speakers anyway.

Should wink always have a special meaning and to be happened deliberately? Blink can have a special meaning or signal as wink have? Can to blink appear deliberately for a special reason such as a signal?

Thank you.

Thank you.
 

GoesStation

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Should wink always have a special meaning and to be happened deliberately? Blink can have a special meaning or signal as wink have? Can to blink appear deliberately for a special reason such as a signal?

Winks are usually directed at someone: she winked at him flirtatiously. Blinking is usually automatic, but can be used as a signal: ​blink twice if you want me to interrupt you.
 

GoesStation

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Does [STRIKE]Should[/STRIKE] "wink" always have a special meaning? Is winking always understood to be[STRIKE]and to be happened[/STRIKE] deliberate[STRIKE]ly[/STRIKE]? Can a blink [STRIKE]Blink can[/STRIKE] have a special meaning or be a signal [STRIKE]as[/STRIKE] like a wink [STRIKE] can[/STRIKE]? Can [STRIKE]to[/STRIKE] blinking appear deliberate[STRIKE]ly[/STRIKE] or be used for a special reason such as a signal?

Thank you.

Note my suggestions above.
 

Tdol

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Opening thread
 

Skrej

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I'm surprised at how all the dictionaries do use wink or blink as a definition for 'nictate' (also spelled 'nictitate'). Presumably that's because it comes from the Latin word meaning to blink.

I've only seen it (in the form of 'nictitate') used to refer to the nictitating membrane or inner eyelid of some animals which protects the eye without having to close the outer eyelids.
 

hhtt21

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No. Nictate is a technical term which would be technically correct but very unnatural. To wink means to close one eye while looking at another person in order to communicate an idea.
. If "nictate" is a technical term, in what fields can it be used for and how can a simple verb about "eye movement" be technical?

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GoesStation

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Nictate is not what I would call a simple verb. It's a rare verb used only by academics and possibly physicians. The simple verbs blink and wink, and the phrase to close ones eye(s), serve perfectly well in everyday use.
 

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GoesStation

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I had not heard of the verb nictate​ until this thread started.

I understood it by seeing its clear relationship to the noun phrase nictating membrane, which I learned when my family got a dog when I was eleven. You may wonder why such a young boy would learn such a specialized term. My father was a professor who sometimes taught comparative anatomy, and that was the only term he knew to answer me with when I asked about the dog's mysterious inner eyelid.
 

Tdol

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I had not heard of the verb nictate​ until this thread started.

I'd got through a fair number of decades without hearing it too.
 

Rover_KE

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I'd got through a fair number of decades without hearing it too.
Me, too, and since learning about it I've never found it necessary to use it.
 

Barb_D

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You might want to say that they "squinted" in the bright light.
images
 

emsr2d2

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Re-opening thread as requested.
 

hhtt21

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I had not heard of the verb nictate​ until this thread started.
Would you explain the difference between these two and explain why the original poster preferred the past perfect tense?

1. "I had not heard of the verb nictateuntil this thread started."
2. I have not heard of the verb nictate before this thread started/before now."

I think there is no difference or it is very subtle so in almost all cases these two are interchangeable.

Thank you.
 
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