Tag Archives: Usage

Latin Plurals: Nouns Ending In -a

First Latin scholar: Crispin, I have some fresh lime. Would you decline a tequila?Second Latin scholar: Certainly. Tequil-a, tequil-am, tequil-ae, tequil-ae, tequil-ā. Tequil-ae, tequil-ās, tequil-ārum, tequil-īs, tequil-īs. That’s a very old joke, referring to Latin first-declension feminine nouns. (My, what a laugh we used to have at the expense of those poor Classics students.) But … Continue reading Latin Plurals: Nouns Ending In -a

Bogus

ˈbəʊɡəs bogus (noun): a press for producing counterfeit coins; a counterfeit coinbogus (adjective): not real, counterfeit, existing in order to deceivebogus (adjective, 21st Century): bad, wrong, inappropriate  Bogus is a potentially expensive word. Back in 2008, the science writer Simon Singh wrote an opinion piece for The Guardian newspaper, entitled “Beware The Spinal Trap“, in … Continue reading Bogus

Serendipity

sɛrɛnˈdɪpɪtɪ serendipity: The faculty of making happy and unexpected discoveries by accident. Also, the fact or an instance of such a discovery People like the word serendipity—there’s something cheerful and unexpected about that “-dipity” ending which makes them want to say it or write it, and so its original meaning has gradually eroded away. The … Continue reading Serendipity

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