Complete overthrow; a reversal; a turning upside down.
[Bouleversement comes from French, from Old French bouleverser “to overturn,” from boule “ball” (from Latin bulla ) & verser “to overturn” (from Latin versare from vertere “to turn”).]
“Ian Salisbury had his chance yesterday but he tried too hard to give the ball a rip on the dry surface and the old tendency to drop short or overpitch cost 34 from eight overs either side of tea as Rhodes and McMillan threatened a bouleversement worthy of the famous England deliverance against Australia in 1981.”
Christopher Martin-Jenkins, Gough takes England to brink
1. [Often capitalized] Of or pertaining to the god Mercury.
2. [Often capitalized] Of or pertaining to the planet Mercury.
3. Having the qualities of shrewdness, eloquence, or thievishness attributed to the god Mercury.
4. Changeable in temperament or mood; temperamental; volatile.
5. Of, pertaining to, or containing mercury.
6. Caused by the use of mercury.
[Mercurial comes from Latin Mercurius “Mercury,” the Roman god of commerce and messenger of the gods.]
“The bulky, white-thatched Georgia congressman was a mercurial, impulsive personality; a brilliant visionary one moment, a petulant, uncontrollable four-year-old the next.”
Dan Balz and Ronald Brownstein, Storming the Gates
1. An alarm bell, or the ringing of a bell for the purpose of alarm.
2. A warning.
[Tocsin derives from Medieval French touquesain from Old Provençal tocasenh from tocar “to touch, to strike, to ring a bell” & senh “church bell,” ultimately from Latin signum “sign, signal.”]
“The first atomic bomb fell and its radioactive cloud became a tocsin for mankind.”
Herbert Mitgang, The Bomb as Horror and Warning