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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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suicide

Suicide is killing yourself on purpose, dying at your own hand. Some people kill themselves by accident, but that’s not suicide, it’s just clumsy and unfortunate.

The word suicide breaks down into the Latin words sui and caedere, which together translate to “kill oneself.” However, not all suicides are about the final end of life. For example, a righteous politician can commit political suicide by speaking publicly about an unpopular topic. We call a person who has killed himself a suicide, and a police report might tell how many suicides happen in a city each year.

Choose your words

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

palate/ palette/ pallet

Palette can refer to a range of colors. A platform used for moving things is a pallet. And your preference of flavors in food is your palate.
read more...

rebut/ refute

To rebut is to try to prove something isn’t true, but to refute is to actually prove it isn’t. Getting them mixed up won’t get you kicked out of the debate club, but it’s worth knowing the difference.
read more...

empathy/ sympathy

Empathy is heartbreaking — you experience other people’s pain and joy. Sympathy is easier because you just have to feel sorry for someone. Send a sympathy card if someone’s cat died; feel empathy if your cat died, too.
read more...

disinterested/ uninterested

If you’re disinterested, you’re unbiased; you’re out of the loop. But if you’re uninterested, you don’t give a hoot; you’re bored. These two words have been duking it out, but the battle may be over for uninterested. Heavyweight disinterested has featherweight uninterested on the ropes. read more...

epigram/ epigraph

An epigram is a little poem or clever statement, but an epigraph is a specific kind of epigram: a witty statement that's inscribed somewhere, such as on a building or at the beginning of a chapter or book. read more...

moral/ morale

A moral is the lesson of a story. Add an "e" and you have morale: the spirit of a group that makes everyone want to pitch in and do better. read more...

See all Choose Your Words articles »
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