Monthly Archives

November 2016

Word of the Day: blow

A blow is a sudden stroke, shock, or attack. To blow means ‘to be moving’ or ‘to move by a current, or movement in one direction, of air.’ It also means ‘to shape with a current of air’ and ‘to produce a current of air with your mouth.’ Informally, to blow means ‘to waste’ and ‘to ruin’ and also ‘to explode.’…

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Introducing the Basic+ Word of the Day!

Dear Word of the Day readers,

We wanted to let you know that on Monday we launched the Basic+ Word of the Day. The Word of the Day you have been receiving will not change, but to keep things clear, we will now call it the Intermediate+ Word of the Day (yes, we know many of you are advanced; we chose this name because our goal with this Word of the Day is to write content that intermediate users can understand, even though there should always be plenty for advanced speakers of English to learn as well).

The new Basic+ Word of the Day is for people who are learning the foundations of English. Even if you are a more advanced learner, you might enjoy the videos we post, so check it out! To sign up for daily emails for the Basic+ Word of the Day, use the form on the right side of our Word of the Day site. And please, tell your friends! We have big plans for more Word of the Day content at all levels, but we can achieve our goals only with your help.

Thank you for your continued support!


The WordReference Word of the Day Team

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Word of the Day: smooth

As an adjective, smooth means ‘with an even surface’ and ‘not rough’. It also means ‘without lumps’ when talking about a sauce or ‘without hair’ when talking about skin. It means ‘having a calm and even movement’ and, more figuratively, smooth means ‘without problems or difficulties’ and also ‘elegant.’ As an adverb, smooth means ‘in a smooth way’ and, as a verb, to smooth is…

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Word of the Day: drive

To drive, as you probably already know, means ‘to operate a vehicle’ and also ‘to move using force.’ It also means ‘to urge or force to do,’ ‘to rush violently,’ and ‘to move something forward by hitting it.’ As a noun, a drive is a trip in a vehicle, a vigorous action taken to achieve a goal, or an inner urge to satisfy a basic need. Drive is also a synonym for ‘…

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Word of the Day: gross

Gross, as an adjective, means ‘total before deductions,’ when used in reference to money. It also means ‘extreme’ and, colloquially, ‘vulgar or indecent’. As a slang term, it means ‘revolting and disgusting.’ As a noun, the gross is the total income or profits. As a verb, to gross means ‘to earn before deductions’…

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Word of the Day: tame

To tame means ‘to domesticate,’ as done with wild animals, and, figuratively, it can be used to talk about people. It also means ‘to control’ and ‘to make less interesting or boring.’ As an adjective, it refers to something that is domesticated and to something or someone that gives in easily. Tame is also a synonym of boring or dull…

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Word of the Day: tack

A tack is a short nail with a large flat head, as well as a long stitch used to fasten fabric before sewing. It is also a course of action and, more specifically, the direction a boat takes when it sails against the wind at an angle. To tack means ‘to fasten or close with tacks’ or, more generally, ‘to attach as something extra’ (often with the preposition onto or adverb on) or ‘to secure before sewing.’ …

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