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Comity vs comedy

Comity and comedy are two words that are very close in pronunciation, but are spelled differently and have different meanings. We will examine the definitions of comity and comedy, where these two words came from and some examples of their use in sentences. Comity means civility or courteous behavior toward each other. Comity is also a term used to describe a relationship between countries in which each country recognizes the laws and customs of the other countries as legitimate. Comity may … [Read more...]

Have someone’s number and I’ve got your number

The phrases to have someone's number and I've got your number are idioms that came into use in the mid-1800s. An idiom is a word, group of words or phrase that has a figurative meaning that is not easily deduced from its literal definition. Common idioms are words and phrases used in the English language in order to convey a concise idea, and are often spoken or are considered informal or conversational. An idiom can illustrate emotion more quickly than a phrase that has a literal meaning, even … [Read more...]

Proliferate vs profligate

The words proliferate and profligate are close in spelling and pronunciation, but have very different meanings. They are often confused. We will examine the difference between the definitions of proliferate and profligate, where these words came from and some examples of their use in sentences. Proliferate means to quickly increase in number, to multiply in a rapid manner, to produce a large amount or to reproduce quickly. The word proliferate has come to be associated with the nuclear arms … [Read more...]

Rows vs rose

Rows and rose are two words that are pronounced in the same manner but are spelled differently and have different meanings, which makes them homophones. Homophones exist because of our ever-changing English language. The way the spelling and definitions differ can be confusing. Pronunciation may change, even though the spelling doesn’t, producing two words that are pronounced in the same manner but have different meanings such as night and knight. English words are also spelled according to … [Read more...]

Blood brother

Blood brother is a phrase with a literal and figurative meaning, which means it is sometimes used as an idiom. An idiom is a word, group of words or phrase that has a figurative meaning that is not easily deduced from its literal definition. Common idioms are words and phrases used in the English language in order to convey a concise idea, and are often spoken or are considered informal or conversational. An idiom can illustrate emotion more quickly than a phrase that has a literal meaning, even … [Read more...]

Laps vs lapse

Laps and lapse are two words that are pronounced in the same manner but are spelled differently and have different meanings, which makes them homophones. Homophones exist because of our ever-changing English language. Pronunciation may change, even though the spelling doesn't, producing two words that are pronounced in the same manner but have different meanings such as night and knight. English words are also spelled according to their etymologies rather than their sound. For instance, the word … [Read more...]

Silver-tongued

Silver-tongued is an interesting idiom that dates back to the 1500s. An idiom is a word, group of words or phrase that has a figurative meaning that is not easily deduced from its literal definition. Common idioms are words and phrases used in the English language in order to convey a concise idea, and are often spoken or are considered informal or conversational. An idiom can illustrate emotion more quickly than a phrase that has a literal meaning, even when the origin of the idiomatic … [Read more...]

Best-laid plans

The phrase the best-laid plans is a translation of a Scottish proverb that was first published in 1786. A proverb is a short, pithy, common saying or phrase that particularly gives advice or shares a universal truth. A proverb is an aphorism. Many English proverbs are wise sayings or truths that are taken as quotations from Hebrew biblical scripture, including the Book of Psalms and the Book of Proverbs in the Old Testament, and the Gospel in the New Testament. Other proverbs, or inspirational … [Read more...]

Twiddle one’s thumbs

The expression twiddle one's thumbs is an idiom that came into use in the mid-1800s. An idiom is a word, group of words or phrase that has a figurative meaning that is not easily deduced from its literal definition. Common idioms are words and phrases used in the English language in order to convey a concise idea, and are often spoken or are considered informal or conversational. An idiom can illustrate emotion more quickly than a phrase that has a literal meaning, even when the origin of the … [Read more...]

The jaws of life

The jaws of life is a term that has been in use since the early 1970s. We will examine the meaning of the expression jaws of life, where it came from and some examples of its use in sentences. The jaws of life is a term that refers to many hydraulic rescue tools used by emergency response crews in order to extricate an accident victim from the wreckage of a rollover, car crash, or other vehicular accident. In most cases, the first responder who aids victims in their escape from such an … [Read more...]

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