Words from the week of 1/31/2020
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Specific behaviors and those who embody them
Schumer calls trial a sham
How we chose 'they'
Some imitative words are more surprising than others
And is one way more correct than the others?
The story of an imaginary word that managed to sneak past our editors and enter the dictionary.
Why don't they call it the Merriam-Webster comma?
Is 'alright' all right?
adj. - focused on death or the gruesome
How to remember which is which
noun - the main point or part
Is there one standard way?
verb - to assert without proof or before proving
And is one more correct than the others?
There, there. We'll sort it out.
The awkward case of 'his or her'
No other common verb follows the pattern of _sneak_…_snuck_. And no one's quite sure why.
They started as the same word, but their meanings have drifted apart over time.
Tripping up English Speakers for 700 years
'Poets laureate'? 'Court-martials'? The curious history of postpositive adjectives in English.
Why does it sound strange to say 'funner' or 'funnest?'
Some practical guidance, and interesting history, about a common mistake.
Why is pig meat is called 'pork' and cow meat is called 'beef?' Because English took on a big serving of French words following the Norman Conquest.
"Verily, I say unto you, the public is a hot mess"
How an ancient philosophical movement devoted to the pursuit of virtue came to describe eye-rolling criticism.
The story of those iconic illustrations.
Noah Webster: the man who changed the way we spell... up to a point.
No one calls it the Merriam-Webster comma. Why?
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Editor Peter Sokolowski talks about 'feminism' and the rest of our Word of the Year 2017 selections
Many of today's grammar rules can be traced to the opinions of one 18th century writer.
Learn the meaning and history of 'macabre' in our video series with TIME
Learn the meaning and history of 'gist' in our video series with TIME
Learn the meaning and history of 'allege' in our video series with TIME
Learn the meaning and history of 'diligent' in our video series with TIME
Learn the meaning and history of 'parvenu' in our video series with TIME
Learn the meaning and history of 'euphoria' in our video series with TIME
Schumer calls trial a sham
l'état, c'est moi
Dershowitz defends Trump in Senate
legacy, legend, & mamba
January 2020 Words of the Day Quiz
Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?
Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.
It was a perfectly nice word for centuries
A tale of two spellings
Word of the Day quiz returns (again!)
What did each of these words mean to ancient Romans?
The dictionary has been scrambled—can you put it back together?