Monthly Archives

September 2017

Intermediate+ Word of the Day: dwell

To dwell is a formal term meaning ‘to live somewhere as a permanent residence’ and also ‘to live or continue in a particular state.’ Figuratively, it means ‘to endure or remain.’ In more everyday language, always followed by on or upon, it means ‘to write, talk or think about something for a long time.’ If a machine dwells, it means that it stops moving for an interval of an operation. The noun dwell is related to this last sense and…

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Intermediate+ Word of the Day: lash

A lash is the flexible end part of a whip or a stroke with a whip or something similar. An eyelash can also be called a lash. As a verb, to lash means ‘to strike with a whip or something similar,’ ‘to beat sharply against,’ or ‘to attack with cruel words.’ It can also mean ‘to move suddenly and swiftly.’ Unrelatedly, to lash can also mean…

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Intermediate+ Word of the Day: swift

If something or someone is swift, it means that it or they can move with great speed and if a decision or an action is swift, it means that it was performed quickly. Swift can also mean ‘quick to act or respond.’ Mostly in US English, it can be used figuratively as a synonym for clever, though this use is a bit dated. As an adverb, swift means ‘in a quick way.’ A swift is a long-winged, swallowlike bird…

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Intermediate+ Word of the Day: toll

A toll is a fee charged by an authority for some right or privilege, like, for example, driving along a road or in telecommunications and, in US English, the payment made for a long distance phone call. A toll is also the extent of damage or the amount of loss suffered because of something. The verb to toll is quite rare, but it means ‘to collect a toll payment.’ Unrelatedly, the verb toll is used to talk about a bell sounding slowly, in single…

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Intermediate+ Word of the Day: plea

A plea is a request or an appeal, something that is said as a justification, or an excuse or pretext. In legal terms, a plea is a defendant’s formal answer to a legal charge, that is, guilty or not guilty…

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