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Search Results for: period

Full stop vs. period

In American English, period is the term for the punctuation mark used to end declarative sentences. In British English, the mark is usually called a full stop. Neither term is right or wrong. They're just different ways of saying the same thing. Full stop for the punctuation mark may be slightly older than period, but both date from the late 16th century. Period derives from the Latin periodus, meaning a complete sentence. Exactly how period went from this to referring to the dot at the end … [Read more...]

Periodic vs. periodical

Something that is periodic (1) happens at regular intervals, or (2) is intermittent. Periodical means published at regular intervals, and it doubles as a noun referring to something that is published at regular intervals. The words were originally variants of each other, and some dictionaries still list periodical as a variant of periodic, but they are generally kept separate in 21st-century usage.  Related -ic/-ical words Periodic and periodical constitute just one of many -ic and … [Read more...]

Period (full stop or full point)

In modern English, the period (or full stop, as it's known in British English, and sometimes full point) has two main purposes: 1.  A period ends a sentence that is not a question or an exclamation. The period at the end of this sentence is an example. 2.  Periods follow abbreviations and contractions---although this is becoming less common, especially in the use of acronyms and initialisms. In British and Australian English, it is standard practice to use periods when abbreviating … [Read more...]

Follow suit

Follow suit is an idiom that has been in use at least since the early 1800s and comes from a phrase originally used literally. An idiom is a word, group of words or phrase that has a figurative meaning that is not easily deduced from its literal definition. Often using descriptive imagery, 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. English idioms can illustrate emotion more … [Read more...]

Eclipses vs ellipsis

Eclipses and ellipsis are two words that are very close in spelling and pronunciation, and are easily confused. We will examine the difference between the words eclipses and ellipsis, where these words came from and some examples of their use in sentences. Eclipses is the plural form of eclipse, which denotes the obscuring of one celestial body by another celestial body or its shadow. The obscuring celestial body passes between the obscured celestial body and the source of light. This type of … [Read more...]

Halitosis

Halitosis is a word that was coined from a Latin root word and a Greek suffix. We will examine the meaning of the word halitosis, where it came from and some examples of its use in sentences. Halitosis is a word that means bad breath, an unpleasant smell or fetid odor coming from one's mouth. There are many causes of bad breath or halitosis due to the growth of bacteria in the mouth. Dental problems including a build up of plaque or tartar on teeth and gums, cavities or tooth decay, … [Read more...]

Bezel vs embezzle

Bezel and embezzle are pronounced in a similar fashion. The two words seem to be related, but they are not. We will examine the definitions of bezel and embezzle, where these words came from and some examples of their use in sentences. A bezel is a rim or ring that holds the crystal, glass, or lens in place on a watch, flashlight, compass, or other item. The word bezel may also be used to mean the rim or ring that holds a stone in place. A jewelry bezel is made of a metal like yellow gold, … [Read more...]

NGO vs GMO

NGO and GMO are abbreviations known as initialisms, which are initial-letter abbreviations that are pronounced as letters rather than words. Initialisms are almost always rendered without periods. NGO and GMO are sometimes confused, so we will examine the definitions of these expressions, where they came from and look at some examples of their use in sentences. NGO is an initialism that stands for non-governmental organization. NGO describes an entity that is not dependent upon a government … [Read more...]

Bucket list

Bucket list is a one of those rare terms in English with a definite etymology. We will examine the definition of the expression bucket list, where it came from and some examples of its use in sentences. A bucket list is a list of things a person wants to do, learn or experience before he dies. Items on a bucket list may be considered life goals. These items vary from person to person, and bucket list ideas may include something to accomplish or an achievement such as obtaining a doctorate or … [Read more...]

Garnish vs garnishee

Garnish and garnishee are two words that people often find confusing. We will examine the definitions of garnish and garnishee, where these two words came from and some examples of their use in sentences. There are two very different definitions for the word garnish. First, the word garnish may mean to decorate something or adorn something, especially food. In this case, the word garnish may may be used as a verb or a noun. For instance, parsley is often a garnish used on plates in … [Read more...]

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