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The ukulele is a four stringed, small guitar.


Ulti is a trick-taking Hungarian card game for three players.


Ultramarine is a blue pigment derived from lapis lazuli.


Ultrasonic is a term referring to sound waves higher in frequency than 15khz.


Umber is a substance comprised of hydrated ferric and manganese oxides with

variable proportions of earthy matter. It is used as a brown pigment.


Umbra is the astrological term for the shadow cast by a planet or satellite.


An umbrella is a light, portable screen usually circular and supported on a

central stick. They are used as protection against the sun, and rain.


An umiak (umiaq) is an open Eskimo boat that consists of a wooden frame covered

with skins and provided with several thwarts. They are used for transporting

passengers and goods.


Umiaq is the Inuit word for an umiak.

Uncle Tom's Cabin

Uncle Tom's Cabin was a story by Mrs H. Beecher-Stowe published in portions in

a newspaper in 1850 and then in a complete form in 1852. The story set forth

the evils of slavery and was an enormous seller and contributed greatly to the

abolition of slavery in Britain.

Uncle Vanya

Uncle Vanya is a play by Anton Chekhov written in 1899.

Underground Railroad

The Underground Railroad was a secret and philanthropical organisation which

existed in the USA and Canada during the later years of slavery with the object

of helping slaves escape bondage. Its chief centre was in Philadelphia. The

Underground Railroad was a network of "safe houses" and individuals who aided

escaped slaves to travel to primarily Canada.

Undertaker Wind

The Undertaker Wind is a prevailing wind which blows out from the island of

Jamaica towards the sea during the night.

Undress Uniform

Undress Uniform is a military and naval term for a uniform worn other than on

formal occasions.


Unicode is a standard of computer character sets that aims to unambiguously

represent every known glyph in every human language. Unicode's native encoding

is 32 bit (older versions use 16 bits).

Union Jack

The Union Jack is the British flag. It was first produced in 1606 in response

to a royal proclamation of James I with the object of providing a single flag

for both England and Scotland which might put an end to disputes concerning the

precedence of their respective banners of St George and St Andrew. The Union

Flag combined the blazonry of the two rival ensigns, not marshalling them by

Quartering, but by blending them into a single composition. This was achieved

by charging the cross of St George with a narrow white border and placing it on

the banner of St Andrew. On the first of January 1801 the second Union Jack

superseded the flag of King James and Queen Anne with the incorporation of the

banner of Ireland, the saltire of St Patrick, following the Union with Ireland.

Union of Calmar

Union of Calmar was a treaty whereby Denmark, Sweden and Norway were united

under one sovereign, Margaret queen of Sweden and Norway. It was agreed in 1397

and dissolved by Gustavus Vassa in 1523.

Union Pacific Railroad

The Union Pacific Railroad was the first railway built across North America. It

started from the Missouri at Omaha and met the Central Pacific Railroad

building eastwards from San Francisco.

Union Suit

A union suit is a close-fitting, knitted undergarment combining a shirt and

drawers in one piece and often have a drop seat.

Union-Castle Steamship Line

The Union Steam Collier Company was founded in 1853, and was renamed the Union

Steamship Company in 1856. It comprised a service to the Cape of Good Hope,

Natal and East Africa. The Castle Mail Packet Company was formed in 1881

carrying mail to South Africa and in 1900 the two companies amalgamated under

the title of the Union-Castle Mail Steamship Company.


see "Dalapon"

United Nations

The United Nations is an international organisation for peace and security.


The universe is all of space and its contents.


UNIX (In the authors' words, "A weak pun on Multics") is an interactive

time-sharing computer operating system originally invented in 1969 by Ken

Thompson after Bell Labs left the Multics project, originally so he could play

games on his scavenged PDP-7. Dennis Ritchie, the inventor of C, is considered

a co-author of the system. The turning point in UNIX's history came when it was

reimplemented almost entirely in C during 1972--1974, making it the first

source-portable OS. UNIX subsequently underwent mutations and expansions at the

hands of many different people, resulting in a uniquely flexible and

developer-friendly environment.

Unsaturated compounds

In chemistry, unsaturated compounds are organic compounds containing double or

triple bonds and are capable of forming addition products.

Unsaturated solution

In chemistry, an unsaturated solution is a solution containing less solute than

the amount needed to make a saturated solution.


Upholstery is the art of covering the rigid frames of chairs, sofas, beds and

other furniture with flexible material either naturally springy or made so by

the introduction of steel springs.


A uraeus was a representation of a sacred asp worn on the headdress of ancient

Egyptian royalty.


Uranium is a silvery, heavy radioactive, polyvalent metallic element that is

found especially in pitchblende and uraninite and exists naturally as a mixture

of three radioactive isotopes of mass number 234, 235 and 238 in the

proportions of .006%, .71% and 99.28% respectively. It has the symbol U.


Urdu is a variety of the Hindustani language, from which it differs in its

extensive borrowing of words from Arabic and Persian.


Urea is a crystalline substance, soluble in water which occurs in the urine of

mammals, birds and reptiles. It was produced artificially by Wohler in 1828 by

evaporating an aqueous solution of ammonium cyanate. This was the first

synthesis of an organic compound from inorganic materials.

Uric acid

Uric acid is a nitrogen containing waste product found in the urine of birds

and reptiles, but rarely mammals.


Usenet (from `Users' Network') is a distributed bulletin board system supported

mainly by UNIX computers. It was originally implemented in 1979-1980 by Steve

Bellovin, Jim Ellis, Tom Truscott, and Steve Daniel at Duke University, it

quickly grew to become international in scope and is now probably the largest

decentralized information utility in existence.


An usher is a person who escorts people to their seats in a theatre, church or

other place.


Usufruct was a term in Roman law signifyingthe right to reap the fruits or take

the benefit of things belonging to others. It might exist in land, houses,

slaves or anything that is not consumed by use. A usufructuary of land was in

the same position as a tenant for life in England, with the addition that he

had the right to open new mines and quarries.


Utopia is a Greek word meaning 'nowhere' and the name for an ideal community.

It is the title of the book written in 1516 by Sir Thomas More in which he

describes an island with perfect inhabitants and laws.


Uttering is the crime of knowing circulating counterfeit money with intent to


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