Christmas Adam

Christmas Adam is a colloquialism for the day before Christmas Eve or December 23rd. It is a rather new term. An online slang dictionary created a listing for it only nine years ago. Christmas Adam is not listed in any formal dictionaries and we had a hard time finding formal writing examples of its use. The general consensus of the origin of the name is that in anticipation for Christmas to come, people were looking for a name for the day before Christmas Eve. Some were calling the 23rd … [Read more...]

Noel or nowel

Noel, when capitalized is another name for Christmas. When it is lowercase it is a synonym for a Christmas carol. The original French word has the accent mark over the e, noël. In French Noël can also mean Christmas. So if you want to reference the French in your work, spell it this way. A yule log is a Christmas dessert that is also known as a bûche de Noël. The Christmas carol The First Noel is about the first carol sung at the first Christmas. In Middle English the spelling … [Read more...]


When it is capitalized, Advent means the month (or four weeks) before Christmas, it is a season of the Christian year for some churches. Also within the Christian faith, Advent means the arrival of Jesus Christ, either when he was born or his Second Coming. An Advent calendar is a countdown during the month of Advent until Christmas. Usually there is a candy or present for each day. When advent is not capitalized means the coming of an important or note-worthy person or object. The Advent … [Read more...]


The adjective antediluvian is a term used for things that come from before the time of the great flood in the Bible. It is also used when something is out-of-date or extremely aged. The connotation is humorous since the speaker is referring to the object as being from before the flood, which happened thousands of years ago. Antediluvian can also be used as a noun. According to Google's ngram, the popularity of the word has faded since the early nineteenth century. Though it is used more … [Read more...]


As an adjective carrot-and-stick refers to the carrot and stick (also known as the carrot or stick) idiom. The phrase means a methodology or system of rules that incorporates reward and punishment to elicit a certain behavior. In order to motivate a donkey to move, there are two methods. Either you strike it with a stick or you urge it along with a carrot. The spelling is uncertain as far as the idiom is concerned, since it is not listed in most dictionaries. The name is carrot and … [Read more...]

Appetizer or hors d’oeuvre

An appetizer (spelled appetiser outside the United States) is a small portion of eatables served before the larger part of the meal is served. The adjective form, appetizing (or appetising), has a slightly different meaning. It means that something is appealing or has a good aroma. It can mean for something to want to be eaten or simply admired. An hors d'oeuvre (pronounced \or derv\) is a synonym for appetizer according to the dictionary and is listed with the same definition. The plural … [Read more...]

Demagogue vs demigod

A demagogue (pronounced \ˈde-mə-ˌgäg\ or dem ah gog) is a leader, usually political, who makes false promises and gains his or her popularity through feelings rather than logic. It may also be spelled demagog. Thought the vast preference is for the longer spelling. So much so that we could not find an acceptable example of the shorter spelling. The actions of a demagogue can be termed demagoguery or demagogy, both of which have multiple accepted pronunciations. It can also be a verb for a … [Read more...]

Even keel

Even keel is technically an idiom which means everything is stable or under control. A related idiom is smooth sailing. Both idioms have their origin in boating or sailing. For a ship to be on an even keel is for it to be level in the water and sailing smoothly. Even keel may be used on its own or in the phrase on an even keel. The second phrase is found in some dictionaries, while the first is not. It is always spelled as two words with no hyphen. Alternatively, even-keeled is listed in some … [Read more...]

Bespeckled or bespectacled

To bespeckle something, one must shower it with tiny dots or flecks of color. Then the item is bespeckled. You could also simply speckle the object, which means the same thing (to cover it with speckles). For an item to be bespectacled, it must be wearing eyeglasses. This word is only found in its adjective form and does not have a verbal form. These words are often confused and one should be clear if the meaning should refer to a speck or some specs. Examples But the next steps are … [Read more...]

Evidence vs evince

Evidence is a noun used for objects, persons, or even speech that give proof something else is real or valid. Evidence is a common term in courts of law. One must have it to prove a person's guilt or innocence, or even the existence of a crime. For something to be in evidence, the item could be submitted to a court of law, or simply that the object is plainly seen or observed. Evidence may also be used as a verb when you offer to prove something with evidence, or you make something plainly … [Read more...]

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