Word of the Day: sort

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Word of the Day
March 2, 2016
sort (noun, verb)
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You can sort recyclables according to their material.
As a noun, sort means 'kind' and refers to a particular group or type, and when talking about people, especially in British English, it means 'of a particular character or nature.' As a verb, sort means 'to arrange something in groups' or 'to classify it in a particular order.' In computing, a sort is the arrangement of data.


Example sentences


The new city zoo is full of animals of all sorts.
Eva's new boyfriend seems to be a decent sort, not like all the others.
We need to sort our books and decide which ones to keep and which to donate.
Jen was sorting her notes so she could start writing her thesis.
Our company needs a computer that is able to perform fast and efficient sorts.


Multi-word forms
sort of: an informal way of saying 'to some extent.' Example "Are you sure about doing it? Sort of, but I'm worried it will be too difficult."
sort out (verb): create clarity, order or resolve something difficult. Example: "We need to sort out our differences or we'll never be able to work together."
sort out (noun, UK): tidying by putting things in order and throwing out things that are no longer needed. Example: "My food cupboard really needs a sort out; I can't find anything in there."
out of sorts: annoyed, upset, or ill. Example "He's feeling out of sorts today, so he called in sick."
Did you know?
In UK English, sorted, the past participle of sort, can be used informally as an interjection when you want to say that something has been dealt with, a solution to a problem has been found, or a course of action has been decided upon. Example: "Did you manage to get all your work done?" "Yes, sorted!" or "So, Gavin is going to take over this project? Great, sorted!" In US English, there is not a single word we use when they would say sorted in the UK. Instead, we usually just say a sentence that makes sense, given the context. For example: "Yes, I finished it," "Yes, it's taken care of," or "Yes, he is."
Other forms
sortable (adjective), sortably (adverb)
As a noun, sort dates back to the first half of the 13th century. As a verb, it comes from the Middle Latin word sortīrī, meaning 'to draw lots,' and the Middle French word sortir.
Sort in other languages
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