Grate vs great

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A grate is 1.) a metal frame, especially one used to confine a fire 2.) a fireplace 3.) to shred a material by rubbing 4.) to make an annoying, rasping sound 5.) to irritate. Grate may be used as a noun or verb, related words are grates, grated, grating. Grate has been used since the fifteenth century to mean cagework across a door or window, from the Latin word cratis which means wickerwork or hurdle. In the fourteenth century, grate also came to be used to mean scrape, scratch, from the Old French word grater.

Great means 1.) of much more than average size, volume, or extent 2.) intense, distinguished, imposing 3.) excellent 4.) skilled, expert 5.) the main or chief item. Great is one of the Oxford English Dictionary’s one thousand most frequently used words, it may be used as an adjective, adverb, and occasionally, a noun. Great is an Old English word derived from the German word grautaz meaning coarse, thick.


A metal grate has been put in place of the missing piece and at least 14 locks have been added to it since the incident. (The Las Vegas Review Journal)

When you’re ready, it’s time to re-add the silica sand and new glowing embers to the bottom of your fireplace grate. (The Valley News)

Scott Diehl, director of the Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre, said: “Every year we get at least two or three raccoons with their heads stuck like this; it’s this particular style of grate that does it. (The Mirror)

As kids, they would help grate cheese and clean tables, but there was one aspect to the business they rarely got to partake in when they were young. (The Longview News-Journal)

“It’s just a great sense of relief,” he said. (The Globe and Mail)

Newspapers were running satires on the “Great Emu War”, picture theatre patrons in Sydney were revolted by footage showing birds fleeing the machine gun or wounded. (The Sydney Morning Herald)

The Great Walks are routes featured by the country’s Department of Conservation (DOC) for their “diverse and spectacular scenery.” (The Seattle Times)

Versions of this contrast have become a common refrain: Sanders sounds great, but governing, is messy, complicated, grown-up. (The Huffington Post)

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