Monthly Archives

July 2016

Word of the Day: reckon

Word of the Day July 29, 2016 reckon (verb) /ˈrɛkən/   LISTEN   What do you reckon? To reckon means 'to calculate or compute something.' It also means 'to consider someone or something as something' or 'to think or suppose something.' Reckon also means 'to expect or anticipate.'   Example sentences   • Tom spent ages reckoning the figures. • Lisa is reckoned one of the top experts in her field. • Charlie reckons we'll have rain tonight. • The speaker was nervous; she hadn't reckoned on so many people coming to hear her talk.   Multi-word forms   reckon […]

Continue Reading

Word of the Day: duck

Word of the Day July 28, 2016 duck (noun, verb) /dʌk/    LISTEN   A mother duck and her ducklings A duck is most commonly a bird that swims, and it is also the meat of this bird served as food. However, duck is also a verb that means 'to bend suddenly to avoid something.' Figuratively, it means 'to avoid something you dislike.' Duck also means 'to briefly put something under water.' Duck is also the noun that describes the act of ducking to avoid something.   Example sentences   • There were several ducks swimming in the pond. • At the […]

Continue Reading

Word of the Day: whip

Word of the Day July 27, 2016 whip (noun, verb) /hwɪp, wɪp/   LISTEN A whisk is an ideal tool for making whipped cream by hand. To whip means 'to beat with a flexible piece of leather.' This is often done as punishment, or for animals like horses it is done to make them go faster. It also means 'to go quickly' or 'to move or seize suddenly'. Figuratively, whip also means 'to train or prepare someone intensely.' Informally, it means 'to defeat' and, in cooking, to whip means 'to mix something until it becomes very light and full of air.' […]

Continue Reading

Word of the Day: queer

Word of the Day July 26, 2016 queer (adjective, noun, verb) /kwɪr/   LISTEN   Though it was once mainly derogatory, the word queer is now used by many members of the homosexual community. When we say that something is queer, we mean that it's odd and different in some way, or possibly suspicious and questionable. It is a little old fashioned now and is mainly used in British English, but queer also means 'slightly sick or ill.' Nowadays, queer is used mostly as a synonym for homosexual, thought it doesn't really mean the exact same thing. As a noun, it […]

Continue Reading

Word of the Day: nip

Word of the Day July 25, 2016 nip (verb, noun) /nɪp/    LISTEN   Nipping flowers off of a plant To nip means 'to squeeze something really tightly' and also 'to cut off,' by either biting or pinching. We also use nip when it's too cold meaning 'to affect painfully.' Informally, nip means 'to defeat someone by a close margin' and, mainly in US English, it means 'to steal.' As a noun, a nip is sharp bite, a small quantity of something, and also a biting cold.   Example sentences   • The neighbors' dog always nips at my heels as […]

Continue Reading

Word of the Day: mate

Word of the Day July 22, 2016 mate (noun, verb) /meɪt/   LISTEN   I love going to the pub with my mates. A mate is a husband or wife, a sexual partner, or one of a pair of animals brought together to breed. It is also one of a pair of anything and, in informal British and Australian English, mate is a really popular term that means 'friend' or 'buddy' and is also used as a term of address. As a verb, to mate means 'to bring animals together for breeding purposes' or 'to join or connect.'   Example sentences   […]

Continue Reading

Word of the Day: blur

Word of the Day July 21, 2016 blur (verb, noun) /blɝ/   LISTEN   A blurry photo To blur means 'to become or cause to become hard to see or hear' and also 'to make something smeared or dirty.' It also means 'to weaken perception or senses' and 'to weaken a distinction.' As a noun, a blur is something that is seen or remembered indistinctly or a dirty mark or smear.   Example sentences   • The rain on the window blurred the landscape outside. • The sounds of the traffic, the shouts of the market traders, and the thousands of […]

Continue Reading

Word of the Day: tear

Word of the Day July 20, 2016 tear  (noun, verb) /tɪr/, /tɛr/   LISTEN     A tear is a drop of liquid that comes out of our eyes when we cry. As a verb, we can use tear to talk about eyes, meaning 'to fill with tears.' However, tear has another and completely different meaning; as a verb, it means 'to pull something apart or into pieces using force' or 'to make a hole in something in the same way.' Used with away it also means 'to remove oneself with effort' or 'to take something away with violence.' In this sense, and as […]

Continue Reading

Word of the Day: shag

Word of the Day July 19, 2016 shag (noun, verb) /ʃæg/   LISTEN   A shag carpet Shag is any rough and tangled wool or hair or a rug or carpet with long loose threads. It is also coarse shredded tobacco or, in US English, a layered hairstyle. As a verb, shag has a sexual meaning in the UK (more information below!). The shag is also a dance that was popular in the 1930s and 40s, especially in the US, and, as a verb, to shag means to perform this type of dance.   Example sentences   • The man had a thick […]

Continue Reading

Word of the Day: spin

Word of the Day July 18, 2016 spin (verb, noun) /spɪn/   LISTEN   I love it when my mom spins me around in circles! To spin means 'to rotate quickly' or 'to have the feeling of rotating,' usually to mean you feel dizzy. Spin also means 'to travel quickly,' 'to invent a story' or, with out, 'to make something longer than necessary.' In the textile industry it means 'to form fibers into threads,' and, in the animal world, 'to form threads or webs from the body.' As a noun, a spin is rotating movement and, figuratively, a downward and sudden trend. […]

Continue Reading