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Read thousands of example sentences from current newspapers, magazines, and literature. We show you how words live in the wild and give you usage tips so that you're more confident about using the words you learn.

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angler

If you go fishing with a rod and a fishing line with a hook at the end of it, you're an angler. An angler might fish off the end of a dock, or from a rowboat in the middle of a lake.

Anglers are distinguished by the fact that they fish with metal hooks, and they often release the fish they catch. You can also call one type of fish an angler, short for anglerfish, a big-headed, relatively small-bodied fish. Angler was originally a last name, and came to mean "fisherman" by about 1500, from the verb angle, "fish with a hook," from the Old English angel, which means "angle," but also "fishhook."

Choose your words

Caught between words? Learn how to make the right choice.

hoard/ horde

To hoard is to squirrel stuff away, like gold bricks or candy wrappers. A horde is a crowd of people, usually, but it can also be a gang of mosquitoes, robots, or rabid zombie kittens.
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medal/ meddle/ mettle

Here we have a trio of words that sound the same (at least in American English) but mean very different things: medal, meddle, and mettle.
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figuratively/ literally

Figuratively means metaphorically, and literally describes something that actually happened. If you say that a guitar solo literally blew your head off, your head should not be attached to your body.
read more...

aggravate/ irritate

Aggravate means to make something worse, and irritate is to annoy. But if you use aggravate to mean “annoy,” no one will notice. That battle has been lost in all but the most formal writing. read more...

indeterminate/ indeterminable

Understanding the nuances of this word pair, indeterminate and indeterminable, hinges on understanding the words' parts. The root word, determine, means to establish something. read more...

unexceptional/ unexceptionable

Clearly, past writers have confused the meanings of unexceptional and unexceptionable to an extent that meanings are expanding. read more...

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