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Quick entries: H

Note: Many of the entries here will eventually become full-length posts. Some are rough and have not been fully researched. If you have any corrections or would like to add anything, please comment. Halcyon: calm and peaceful. Hands-on: When it functions as an adjective (e.g., the activity was hands-on), give it a hyphen. Happy median vs. happy medium: Happy median makes sense logically, but happy medium is the common phrase meaning a course or solution that avoids … [Read more...]

Quick entries: G

Note: Many of the entries here will eventually become full-length posts. Some are rough and have not been fully researched. If you have any corrections or would like to add anything, please comment. Gage, gauge, gouge: Gage is rare. It means something given as security for an obligation. Gauge relates to measurements. Gouge relates to chiseling, scooping, and digging. Galumph: a verb meaning to move clumsily. Gambol: (to playfully skip or frolic about) makes gamboled and gamboling in … [Read more...]

Quick entries: F

Note: Many of the entries here will eventually become full-length posts. Some are rough and have not been fully researched. If you have any corrections or would like to add anything, please comment. Face lift, face-lift, facelift: All three forms are common, but the one-word form will win in the end. Facetious vs. fatuous: Facetious: jocular or sarcastic, often but not necessarily in a mocking way. Fatuous: smugly foolish. Faeces vs. feces: feces in North America; faeces everywhere … [Read more...]

Quick entries: E

Note: Many of the entries here will eventually become full-length posts. Some are rough and have not been fully researched. If you have any corrections or would like to add anything, please comment. Each other: not eachother. Each other's: other is singular in this phrase, so it is made possessive by adding 's. Ecumenical: universal. Effete: (1) lacking vitality, (2) decadent, or (3) effeminate. The last sense is born from long misuse of the word in place of effeminate. Elephant … [Read more...]

Quick entries: D

Note: Many of the entries here will eventually become full-length posts. Some are rough and have not been fully researched. If you have any corrections or would like to add anything, please comment. (The) dark continent: an antiquated, now offensive term for Africa. Don't use it. Day care vs. daycare: The two-word form prevails in American English. Both are common in other varieties of English. Debark vs. disembark: Disembark: (1) to leave a craft; (2) to take ashore. Debark: (1) to … [Read more...]

Quick entries: C

Note: Many of the entries here will eventually become full-length posts. Some are rough and have not been fully researched. If you have any corrections or would like to add anything, please comment. Calumny: A false statement meant to hurt someone's reputation. Plural calumnies. Camaraderie vs. comradeship: no difference in meaning. Can of worms: an issue that when broached is likely to raise a complex set of unresolvable issues. Candor vs. candour: candor in American … [Read more...]

Quick entries: B

Note: Many of the entries here will eventually become full-length posts. Some are rough and have not been fully researched. If you have any corrections or would like to add anything, please comment. Backstage: one word. Backwater: an isolated place. Bad vs. badly: Bad is a long-established flat adverb (i.e., an adjective that can become an adverb without adding -ly), but many people believe using bad as an adverb is always wrong. You can either ignore these people or play it safe by … [Read more...]

Quick entries: A

Note: Many of the entries here will eventually become full-length posts. Some are rough and have not been fully researched. If you have any corrections or would like to add anything, please comment. Aberrant: deviating from norms. There is also aberrational, meaning or or relating to aberration; and the rare aberrative, meaning tending to deviate from norms.  Absorption: absorbtion is a misspelling. Accent vs. accentuate: As the traditional distinction goes, accent is literal … [Read more...]

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