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Cashmere vs Kashmir

Cashmere and Kashmir are two terms that are intricately related, but mean two different things today. They may be pronounced in the same fashion but are spelled differently, and they are homophones. We will examine the difference between cashmere and Kashmir, where these terms came from and some examples of their use in sentences. Cashmere refers to a type of wool that is very fine and and soft. Cashmere wool comes from the cashmere goat, which is a certain type of goat found in the Kashmir … [Read more...]

Pause vs paws

Pause and paws are two words that are pronounced in the same way but are spelled differently and have different meanings. They are homophones. We will examine the difference between the definitions of pause and paws, where these words came from and some examples of their use in sentences. Pause means to temporarily stop during a process or while speaking, and then resume the process or speaking. Pause may also be used as a noun to mean the temporary stop or break taken during a process or … [Read more...]

Ides of March

Many people are familiar with the phrase the ides of March because of the Shakespeare play, Julius Caesar. We will examine what the phrase the ides of March means, where it came from and some examples of its use in sentences. The ides of March is the date March 15th. Ides is an Ancient Roman term meaning the middle day of a month. In some months the ides is the 13th day of the month, and in other months the ides is the 15th day of the month. The ides of March is famous because according to … [Read more...]

Tar and feather

Tar and feather is an interesting term that has both a literal and a figurative sense. When used in the figurative sense it is an idiom, which 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 both of the definitions of tar and feather, where the term came from and some examples of its use in sentences. In its literal sense, tar and feather refers to the process of coating someone in black, liquid tar and … [Read more...]

Barnstorm

Barnstorm is an interesting word that has been around for several hundred years. It is a closed compound word, which is a word composed of two separate words that were used together so often that they eventually became melded into one word. We will examine the meaning of the term barnstorm, where it came from and some examples of its use in sentences. Barnstorm means to travel around from small town to small town putting on shows, exhibitions or making political speeches. The first … [Read more...]

Hall vs haul

Hall and haul are homophones, which are words that are pronounced in the same fashion but are spelled differently and have different meanings. We will examine the difference between the definitions of hall and haul, where these words came from and some examples of their use in sentences. A hall may be the space just inside the entrance to a house or other building, a large event place or a narrow corridor that leads to other rooms. Hall may also mean a large building where students live in a … [Read more...]

Billed vs build

Billed and build are two words that are pronounced in the same way, but are spelled differently and have different meanings. They are homophones. We will examine the difference between the definitions for billed and build, where these words came from and some examples of their use in sentences. Billed is the past tense of bill, which means to send a statement asking for payment for goods or services rendered. Bill may also mean to list someone in a program as scheduled to appear. Related … [Read more...]

Easter egg

Easter egg has both a literal meaning and a figurative meaning. We will examine both the literal and figurative meanings of the term Easter egg, where they came from and some examples of their use in sentences. An Easter egg is an edible egg, usually from a chicken, that is usually boiled and then dyed or decorated in some fashion before it is hidden for children to hunt. Alternatively, an Easter egg may be a candy or chocolate egg. The term Easter egg first came into use around 1825, before … [Read more...]

Four-flusher

Four-flusher is an American idiom that first appeared around the turn of the twentieth century. 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 term four-flusher, where it came from and some examples of its use in sentences. The term four-flusher describes someone who is a phony, a fake, someone who blatantly and unsuccessfully attempts a bluff. A related term is … [Read more...]

Sty vs stye

Sty and stye are two words that are often confused. They are pronounced in the same fashion but are spelled differently and have two different meanings, making them homophones. We will examine the difference between the definitions of sty and stye, where these two words came from and some examples of their use in sentences. A sty is a pen for a pig. Though pigs are basically clean creatures, their inability to cool themselves necessitates the need to roll in mud. This tendency gives the sty a … [Read more...]

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