Showing posts with label british. Show all posts
Showing posts with label british. Show all posts

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

50 Awesome Holiday Words to Know This December

The holidays are upon us, and these winter celebrations with their many traditions each have a rich and varied vocabulary.

From Krampus to kinara, latke to plum pudding, frankincense to yule—there’s a whole host of fantastic holiday words to explore.

So broaden your lexicon and enter the holiday spirit with these fifty awesome holiday words!

1. Advent:

A Latin word meaning “coming;” the Christian season of expectant waiting and preparation beginning four Sundays before Christmas.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

When to Use Of vs. Off?

  • Of is a preposition that indicates relationships between other words, such as belonging, things made of other things, things that contain other things, or a point of reckoning.
  • Off is usually used as an adverb or a preposition. In both cases, it indicates separation or disconnection.

Mixing them up is always a mistake, but of and off are commonly confused nonetheless. Below, we’ve listed some common situations where you want to use of and some where off is the correct choice.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

New Uses for Old Words

Like an unkeyboardinated tween, you can count on language for boundless creativity – and a seeming randomness that’s hard to keep up with.

We’re constantly adding new words and devising new forms and quirky mashups of old ones. But whether you’re squishing two existing words together to create a new one, or perhaps repurposing a familiar pronoun to be more inclusive, many of the ways we tinker with language follow a few well-worn patterns.

Monday, December 22, 2014

10 Words Brits Use That Americans No Longer Do

A quick example of the bleeding obvious: people speak differently in the UK and the US. If you’re an American fan of British TV shows—the originals, not the American remakes—you’re probably very aware that once in a while, the characters will utter a word that you won’t hear on the streets of your hometown.

But you may be surprised to know that some of the words we consider distinctly British today were once fairly common in the United States.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

3 Cool Ways English Evolved in 2015

It’s hard to keep up with a language evolving as fast as English. Before you know it, a new turn of phrase has come and gone before you can say selfie. That’s so passé. Do try to keep up. Let’s have a look at some trends from 2015.

1 Portmanteaus, or word mashups

It’s been climbing the charts for a few years now, but in 2015, the portmanteau officially arrived. Portmanteaus are nothing new, but lately they’re “spiviralling” out of control.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Is ‘Ginormous’ a Word?

  • Ginormous is a non-standard word.
  • Ginormous is an adjective that means very big.

In the murky territory of words you’ve heard people use but you’re not really sure whether you could call them words, ginormous takes up a lot of space.

What Does Ginormous Mean?

Ginormous originated during the World War II as a slang word among British soldiers. Its first official appearance in written form was in the 1948 A Dictionary of Forces’ Slang, 1939-1945.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

14 Expressions with Crazy Origins that You Would Never Have Guessed

Guest post by Anais John

You probably use tons of expressions, idioms, and slang phrases every day that don’t make literal sense. If you ever thought long and hard about why you say something a certain way, you could probably make a guess. However, some English expressions are so crazy and unusual that it is impossible to guess where on earth it originated from — unless you know the history.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Practice or Practise–Which Spelling Is Right?

Practice with a C or practise with an S—which spelling is correct? In American English, practice is always right. In British English, whether practice or practise is the correct choice depends on its role in the sentence. How can you know which form to use?

In American English, practice may function as a noun or a verb. Regardless of its role in the sentence, the correct spelling is always practice with a C.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Restrictive and Nonrestrictive Clauses—What’s the Difference?

A restrictive clause modifies the noun that precedes it in an essential way. Restrictive clauses limit or identify such nouns and cannot be removed from a sentence without changing the sentence’s meaning. A nonrestrictive clause, on the other hand, describes a noun in a nonessential way.

The terminology in this area of grammar can be confusing, so let’s get that out of the way. Because restrictive clauses provide key, identifying information, they are often referred to as essential clauses, and nonrestrictive clauses are also called nonessential clauses for the opposite reason.