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Yam vs sweet potato

The terms yam and sweet potato are often confused. We will examine the definitions of the words yam and sweet potato, where they came from and some examples of their use in sentences. A yam is a starchy tuberous crop from Africa or Asia with a rough, brownish exterior and a white or yellowish interior. There is little carotene in a yam. It is a member of the Dioscorea genus, and usually comes from Caribbean countries. Yams may be eaten in place of rice, potatoes or bread. The word yam is … [Read more...]

Indian corn

Indian corn is a term that originated in America and is a reference to the Native Americans. We will examine the meaning of the term Indian corn, where it came from and some examples of its use today.Indian corn is a maize that consists of hard, multi-colored kernels. The word corn is actually an Old English word that means small seed, and was meant to refer to the common crop of a local district such as wheat or oats. When the settlers encountered the maize cultivated by the Native … [Read more...]

Friendsgiving

Friendsgiving is a new word that first appeared in the early 2000s. It is a portmanteau of the words friends and Thanksgiving. A portmanteau is a word constructed by blending the sounds and meanings of two different words. We will examine the definition of the word Friendsgiving, where it came from and some examples of its use in sentences.Friendsgiving is a Thanksgiving dinner and celebration that is a gathering of friends, not family, on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving Day or the Friday … [Read more...]

Stuffing vs dressing

Stuffing and dressing are two Thanksgiving culinary terms that are often used interchangeably, though technically there is a difference between the two. We will examine the meanings of stuffing and dressing in a culinary sense, where these two terms came from and some examples of their use in sentences.Stuffing is any mixture that is cooked inside poultry or meat. Usually, stuffing consists of bread or cornbread and vegetables such as celery, onion and fresh parsley, as well as seasonings … [Read more...]

Fallow vs follow

Fallow and follow are two words that are very close in spelling and pronunciation, but mean two different things. We will examine the definitions of the words fallow and follow, where these words came from and some examples of their use in sentences.Fallow is an adjective that describes land that is left unplanted for a period of time in order to allow the soil to regain its fertility. Fallow may be used as a noun in order to mean land that is left unplanted for a period of time. Fallow is … [Read more...]

-gate

The suffix -gate is a word ending that has its roots in an American scandal that occurred in the 1970s. We will examine the meaning of the suffix -gate, where it came from and some examples of its use.The suffix -gate is added to words in order to designate a scandal or a controversy. Some recent examples of the use of the suffix -gate include hamburgergate, a lighthearted controversy involving the placement of cheese on hamburger emojis, pizzagate involving a fake news story about … [Read more...]

Half-baked

Half-baked is an idiom that has been in use since the 1600s. An idiom is a figure of speech that is a word, group of words or phrase that has a figurative meaning that is not easily deduced from its literal definition. We will examine the definition of half-baked, where it came from and some examples of its use in sentences.Half-baked describes something that has not been properly thought through, something impractical or based on false assumptions, something foolish or poorly conceived. The … [Read more...]

Gibberish

The exact origin of the word gibberish is unknown, though the word has been in the language since the sixteenth century. We will examine the definition of the word gibberish, where it may have come from and some examples of its use in sentences.Gibberish is speech or writing that is meaningless, incoherent, or unintelligible. Gibberish is speech or writing that belongs to no known language, consisting of sounds that are not actual words. Gibberish is a disparaging term, often applied to … [Read more...]

At the end of one’s rope or at the end of one’s tether

At the end of one’s rope and at the end of one’s tether are two idioms that mean basically the same thing. An idiom is a figure of speech that is a word, group of words or phrase that has a figurative meaning that is not easily deduced from its literal definition. We will examine the meaning of the terms at the end of one’s rope and at the end of one’s tether, where they came from and some examples of their use in sentences.At the end of one’s rope means to be at the end of one’s strength, … [Read more...]

Parkour

Parkour is a twenty-first century word that has its roots in the military. We will examine the definition of the word parkour, where it came from and some examples of its use in sentences.Parkour is a sport or discipline that involves rapidly negotiating an urban area by climbing, jumping or vaulting over obstacles without pause. Practitioners use no equipment, other than light running shoes. The discipline of parkour is derived from French obstacle course training that was practiced before … [Read more...]

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