Monthly Archives

October 2016

Word of the Day: spell

To spell means ‘to name, say, or write the letters of a word’ and also, figuratively, ‘to mean or signify.’ As a noun, a spell has a really different meaning. It’s a word or phrase with magic powers, as well as the state of enchantment caused by it. Figuratively, any state of fascination is also called a spell. A spell is also a continuous period of activity…

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Word of the Day: vault

To vault means ‘to leap, from place to another or over something.’ Figuratively, it means ‘to achieve something quickly,’ as though you have leapt past others or over obstacles to do so. A vault, as a noun, is the leap of a horse or any act of leaping in general. However, a vault is also an arched structure that forms a ceiling,…

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Word of the Day: whole

Whole is an adjective that means ‘entire, full’ and ‘complete, with all its parts.’ It’s also used to emphasise how much an amount is. Whole also means ‘not broken or injured.’ A whole number is a number that is not a fraction. As a noun, a whole is an assembly of things considered as one thing or a thing that is complete in itself…

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Word of the Day: shake

To shake is ‘to move with short, quick movements or up and down when mixing’ and ‘to tremble’, literally and figuratively, as with cold or excitement or fear. When we shake hands, we hold someone else’s hand in greeting and move it up and down. Shake, often used with off, also means ‘to get rid of something’ or ‘to cause something to become loose and fall’…

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Word of the Day: commit

To commit yourself or to commit to something is ‘to declare your opinion on a matter’ or ‘to place yourself under an obligation to do something.’ If you commit something to somebody or something means you are entrusting it to that person or entity. In addition, to commit means ‘to put something in place’ and more specifically ‘to send someone or something to battle’…

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Word of the Day: quiz

A quiz is an informal and short test for students or a series of questions. Its also an archaic word for a practical joke or someone odd or eccentric. As a verb, to quiz means to examine students by asking them questions and also to question really closely and in detail. Another archaic meaning of quiz is ‘to make fun or mock someone or something’…

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Word of the Day: dike

A dike, also spelled dyke in UK English, is a thick wall used to hold back water from a river or ocean and also a ditch. In Scottish English, a dyke is a wall, usually made out of stones, that divides or encloses land, and more generally, in UK English, an obstacle or barrier…

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Word of the Day: craft

A craft is an art that requires hand skills and it is also the ability to use your hands well or, negatively, a skill used for bad purposes, such as cunning or deceit. Crafts (or handicrafts), in the plural, are objects made by hand. A craft is also a ship or an airplane, or ships and airplanes thought of as a group…

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Word of the Day: fiddle

A fiddle is a violin. As a verb, to fiddle means not only ‘to play the violin,’ but also ‘to make fussy movements with your hands.’ Figuratively, to fiddle means ‘to manipulate something in order to adjust it.’ Colloquially, and often followed by the preposition around, to fiddle means ‘to waste time’…

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