Super- vs supra-

The prefix super- means larger, bigger, better, higher, or greater. Almost always this prefix is used without hyphens, unlike the prefix self-. Supra-, unlike hypo- and hyper-, is not an exact opposite of super-. In some cases, it has the same meaning and acts as a synonym, usually for words where the supra- formation exceeds the super- in popularity. Another definition of supra- is that the modified object rises above those around it or those before it. It should be noted that there are … [Read more...]

Dumpster vs dumpster

Dumpster is the name, inside the United States, for a large metal container for trash. Outside the United States the receptacle is called either a skip or a front load container. This term was created by a business for their specialized containers that let a truck empty them without any manual labor required. The name was formed from the word dump, the place were all trash is taken. For years the word was so popular that all containers were called Dumpsters, but the word remained … [Read more...]

Google vs google

Google, with a capital G, is the name of the company behind www.google.com. It is a search engine that allows one to find things on the internet. As a verb, google, notice the lowercase g, means to use a search engine to find something, usually the answer to a question. Originally this meant to use Google specifically to search, but now the term is so widespread that the definition has shifted to mean using any method to find the answer on the internet. If someone else tells you to 'go google … [Read more...]

Kleenex vs tissue

A tissue can be a piece of a living plant or animal, thin paper which provides filler to gift bags, and thin, absorbent paper one can use to blow one's nose. The adjective form is tissuey and it comes from the Latin word for weaving. Kleenex is the name of a brand of tissues that one can use to blow one's nose. It should always be capitalized since it is a proper noun as the name of a company. The plural is formed by adding an es at the end. While usage would suggest that this term be … [Read more...]

Repetition vs repetitiveness

Repetition is a noun for the act of repeating, in other words, saying or doing something someone else has already done or something you have done before. It can be a negative thing or a positive. Some art forms are learned by repetition, while speeches generally should not have a lot of repetition in them. The term can be used in many different fields where the meaning changes slightly, but it always has to do with something happening again in some form. The adjective form … [Read more...]

Spearhead

As a noun, spearhead can literally be the point of a spear, a weapon. Figuratively a spearhead is a person or group of people that takes charge of a project or movement. The spearhead is the one who is responsible for forward motion and progress. It is used especially in sports for a person or player who is known for aggressive moves on the field or court. As a verb, spearhead means to push something forward or lead the charge. It can be used in a military sense as well. Examples The … [Read more...]

Sensational vs sensationalistic

Sensational is an adjective that describes something or someone as inciting interest and excitement. It can be used when details about a topic are presented in a particular way so as to incite the most interest or excitement. Also, it can simply be a way to say something is great or awe-inspiring. The adverb form is sensationally. Sensationalistic is the adjective form of the word sensationalism. Sensationalism is a noun for the act of using details and information in a way to incite … [Read more...]

Personality vs personage vs persona

Someone's personality is the specific set of qualities and interests that make him or her unique and unlike others. If someone has personality, he or she is lively or engaging in some way that appeals to others. A personality can also be a famous person or celebrity. Personage is a fancy word for person and because it is fancy, the person is seen as fancy or deserving of a higher respect. It can also mean characters in books or paintings. A persona is the part of a person that is seen by … [Read more...]

Prodigal and prodigy

Prodigal can be an adjective used to describe something as producing or owning a quality or item in overabundance, in other words, lavishly or extravagantly. A person who is described as prodigal is someone who is extravagant with his or her money or some other resource. This word is always used with the feeling of wastefulness. It can also be a noun, so someone could be a prodigal. In the Bible this term was used in a parable by Jesus. The story is normally referred to as the prodigal son … [Read more...]

Cottage industry

Cottage industry is a term used to describe a venture or manufacturing business that relies on people doing the work in their own homes. This can either be someone's individual home business in which he or she sells the items. Or it can refer to a large company that uses individuals to make and sell the product, instead of factories. It can also be used to describe a topic or activity that is restricted but those that do engage in it are very excited about it. The singular can also be a … [Read more...]

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