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Brews vs bruise

Brews and bruise are two words that are pronounced in the same manner but are spelled differently and have different meanings, which makes them homophones. We will examine the definitions of brews and bruise, where these words came from and some examples of their use in sentences. Brews is the third person present tense of the word brew, which means to concoct a beverage such as a beer or tea through fermentation or steeping with hot water. Brew may also mean to develop an unpleasant … [Read more...]

A fish out of water

A fish out of water is an idiom that goes back hundreds of years. An idiom is a word, group of words or phrase that has a figurative meaning that is not easily deduced from its literal meaning. We will examine the definition of the phrase a fish out of water, where the term came from and some examples of its use in sentences. A fish out of water describes someone who is not in his element, someone who is unsuited for the situation or environment he finds himself in. The term a fish out of … [Read more...]

Come over vs overcome

Come over and overcome are two terms that are often confused. We will examine the definitions of come over and overcome, where these terms came from and some examples of their use in sentences, Come over is a phrasal verb that describes the process of a feeling or desire falling upon someone, the process of suddenly feeling or thinking a certain way. Come over may also mean to switch from one alliance to another. Come over may also mean to travel to someone's house. The phrasal verb come over … [Read more...]

Phubbing

Phubbing is one of those rare words that can be traced to a very specific origin. We will examine the meaning of the term phubbing, where it came from and some examples of its use in sentences. Phubbing describes the attention one gives to one's cell phone or other electronic mobile device to the exclusion of the companions one is with. Phubbing is the noun form, though it is sometimes used as a verb as in phub, phubs, phubbed. The word phubbing was coined as a marketing campaign for the … [Read more...]

Kick over the traces

Kick over the traces is an idiom that is primarily used in Great Britain, the phrase is rarely seen in North America. An idiom is a word, group of words or phrase that has a figurative meaning that is not easily deduced from its literal meaning. We will examine the definition for kick over the traces, where the term came from and some examples of its use in sentences. To kick over the traces means to be insubordinate, to purposely shake off authority, to be reckless or unruly. Most … [Read more...]

Dumb waiter and dumbwaiter

Dumb waiter and dumbwaiter are two words that are used interchangeably for an invention that has been around since Roman times, though the terms dumb waiter and dumbwaiter date back to the 1700s. We will examine the definition for dumb waiter and dumbwaiter, where these terms came from and some examples of their use in sentences. A dumb waiter or dumbwaiter is a small freight elevator used to transport food or dirty dishes from meals between floors in a house or other building. Today, dumb … [Read more...]

Comestible vs combustible

Comestible and combustible are two words that are sometimes confused. We will examine the differing definitions of comestible and combustible, where these two words came from and some examples of their use in sentences, Comestible means something edible, a food item, something that may be eaten. Comestible may be used as a noun or an adjective. It is derived from the Latin word comedere which means to consume, to eat up. There plural form of comestible is comestibles. Combustible describes … [Read more...]

Blow your own trumpet and toot your own horn

Blow your own trumpet and toot your own horn are two expressions of the same idiom. An idiom is a word, group of words or phrase that has a figurative meaning that is not easily deduced from its literal meaning. We will examine the meaning of the phrases blow your own trumpet and toot your own horn, where these terms came from and some examples of their use in sentences. The phrases to blow your own trumpet and to toot your own horn mean to brag about one's achievements, to boast about one's … [Read more...]

Foe vs faux

Foe and faux are two words that are pronounced in the same manner but are spelled differently and have different meanings, which makes them homophones. We will examine the differing definitions of foe and faux, where these words came from and some examples of their use in sentences. Foe an enemy, an adversary or an opponent. A foe is the opposite of a friend. The word foe is derived from the Old English word fāh which means feud or hostile, and the Old English word gefā which means enemy. The … [Read more...]

Succor or succour vs sucker

Succor or succour and sucker are words that are pronounced in the same manner but are spelled differently and have different meanings. They are homophones. We will examine the definitions of succor or succour and sucker, where these words came from and some examples of their use in sentences. Succor is aid given to someone when he is in distress, support for someone who is suffering. Succor is the American spelling, the British spelling is succour. The word succor is derived from the Latin … [Read more...]

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