Monthly Archives

April 2016

Word of the Day: labor

Word of the Day April 29, 2016 labor (US), labour (UK) (noun, verb, adjective) LISTEN     Labor is a noun that means 'an activity to produce something' and it is also the workers payed for doing such activity, considered collectively as a group. It is also physical or mental work, especially when the activity is hard and tiring. Labor is also the last stage in pregnancy, when the baby is born. As a verb, to labor means 'to work' and it is mostly used for manual tasks that involve great effort. Figuratively, it means 'to move really slowly and […]

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Word of the Day: can

Word of the Day April 28, 2016 can (noun, verb) LISTEN     As you probably already know, can is a verb that means 'to be able to' or 'to have the possibility to.' However, can has many other meanings. As a noun, a can is an aluminum container, especially one used for liquids, or the quantity held by one of them. In US English, it is also a big container for garbage. Informally, in US English, it either means 'the toilet' or 'prison.' As a verb, can means 'to preserve food by putting it in a can.' Informally, in US […]

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Word of the Day: wear

Word of the Day April 27, 2016 wear (verb, noun) LISTEN   The clothes you wear can say a lot about you. To wear means 'to use a piece of clothing or an ornament on the body' or 'to have a facial expression.' We also use it to talk about the style in which we have our hair or beards. Wear also means 'to deteriorate through use,' and when something wears well, that means that it is resistant and lasts a long time. As a noun, wear is the action of wearing clothes. Wear is also the damage shown by […]

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Word of the Day: cater

Word of the Day April 26, 2016 cater (verb) LISTEN   A buffet at a catered event To cater means 'to provide food and drink for an event or person.' It also means 'to provide someone or something with whatever is needed or required' (not only food and drinks), or 'to satisfy a desire,' especially when indulging someone. It can also mean 'to take something into account' or 'to keep something in mind.'   Example sentences   • Edward and Pamela both have very demanding jobs, so they hired a chef to cater their dinner party. • This firm specializes in catering […]

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Word of the Day: scrub

Word of the Day April 25, 2016 scrub (verb, noun) LISTEN   Facial scrubs can help exfoliate your skin. Most commonly, scrub means 'to remove dirt from something or to clean by rubbing hard with a cloth or a brush.' Scrub also means 'to cancel or postpone' in informal language. As a noun, a scrub can be the act of scrubbing or a cosmetic product made for scrubbing the skin, or it can be a lot of plants and low trees growing in a forest or other uncultivated area. In North American English, it is also used to refer to an […]

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Word of the Day: flake

Word of the Day April 22, 2016 flake (noun, verb) LISTEN   Flakes of snow falling A flake is a very small and thin piece that has come off of something larger. It also refers to the single tiny pieces we see when it snows. In informal US English, a flake is a really eccentric person, whereas in British and sometimes US English it can also be an unreliable or lazy person. As a verb, to flake means 'to peel off and fall in flakes' or 'to break into little flakes.' It can also mean 'to cover with flakes' and, […]

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Word of the Day: bother

Word of the Day April 21, 2016 bother (noun, verb) LISTEN   My husband's snoring really bothers me! To bother means 'to annoy someone,' or 'to worry or disturb.' Bother also means 'to take the trouble to do something.' In this sense, it is usually used with a negative construction. As a noun, a bother is something that causes trouble or annoyance or something that needs a lot of effort. If we say that someone is a bother, it means that person is really annoying.   Example sentences   • Stop bothering your sister; she's trying to do her homework! • […]

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Word of the Day: tick

Word of the Day April 20, 2016 tick (noun, verb) LISTEN     A tick is a sharp clicking sound, like the sound a clock makes. In UK English, however, a tick is also a small mark made on a list (called a check mark in US English) to indicate either that something has already been taken care of or that something is correct. Informally and in UK English, a tick is a moment. As a verb, to tick means 'to make a clicking sound' or 'to indicate the passing of time.' In the time sense it is often used with […]

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Word of the Day: hail

Word of the Day April 19, 2016 hail (verb, noun) LISTEN   A woman hailing a cab. As a noun, hail refers to little pieces of ice that fall from the sky in heavy storms. Figuratively we use it to mean 'a large quantity of anything.' As a verb, it means 'to rain hail' or 'to fall like hail.' However, hail has other meanings as a verb. It also means 'to welcome something very enthusiastically' or 'to attract someone's attention.'   Example sentences   • It was a winter day and Esther looked out of the window at the falling hail. […]

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Word of the Day: chap

Word of the Day April 18, 2016 chap (verb, noun) LISTEN Chap is another word for "man" in UK English. As a verb, chap means 'to crack and roughen the skin' or 'to become cracked and rough.' Weather conditions may also chap wood or the ground. As a noun, a chap is a crack in the skin or in other surface. In British English, a chap is an informal and now rather old-fashioned word for a man.   Example sentences   • The wind chapped the skin on Tom's face. • Belinda's lips always chap in the winter. • I […]

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