2 3 4 5 6 Displaying 22-28 of 107 Articles

Like NyQuil, a good euphemism can quiet the mind, induce sleep, and stop you from coughing up unpleasant things, like truth or phlegm.

Unlike NyQuil, not all euphemisms are available in local drug stores. For the fine euphemism connoisseur, I hope you'll enjoy these lesser-known dances around the truth — their lexical jigs may be unfamiliar, but their style is unmistakable, in this land of purple majesties, low-information voters, and rhetorical flourishes. Continue reading...

Last night, the Council of Literary Magazines and Presses held its fifth annual Spelling Bee in support of its non-profit efforts to help out independent literary publishers. The CLMP always attracts an all-star cast of spellers from the New York book world. This time around, the Visual Thesaurus joined forces with the CLMP Bee, supplying the words to stump the cream of the literary crop. Continue reading...
A small pronunciation incident in the Lounge recently has driven us down the path of reflection on the need for an easygoing approach to the way other people talk. Continue reading...
In the home stretch of the presidential campaign trail, John McCain has been saying that his opponent Barack Obama is so sure that he's bound for the White House that he's already "measuring the drapes." It's a durable political expression, though very often it's said as "measuring for drapes" (which makes a bit more sense), and sometimes it's curtains that get presumptuously measured (for), rather than drapes. What's the difference, anyway? Continue reading...

Blog Excerpts

VT Bee @ OUP

On OUPblog (the official blog of Oxford University Press), Ben Zimmer sings the praises of the Visual Thesaurus Spelling Bee.

Today's question for Mailbag Friday comes from our own puzzlemaster, Brendan Emmett Quigley, who's been watching a lot of football. "What gives with all these sportscasters saying 'Team A out-physicaled Team B'? Physical, last time I checked, is an adjective and not a verb, right?"

Brendan's question reminds me of a saying attributed to the great philosopher Calvin (the one from "Calvin and Hobbes," of course): "Verbing weirds language." Continue reading...
Our old friend Orin Hargraves, who contributes our monthly Language Lounge feature, has a new book out called Slang Rules!: A Practical Guide for English Learners. We recently caught up with Orin to hear about how his book, a companion to Merriam-Webster's Advanced Learner's English Dictionary, illuminates the richness of American slang for a global audience of language learners. Continue reading...
2 3 4 5 6 Displaying 22-28 of 107 Articles

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, Vocabulary.com can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.