Order, Age, and Pareidolia

In Greek myth, drinking from the Pierian spring instilled knowledge. In modern terms, Pope is saying that superficial knowledge makes people imagine they know more than they do about a topic; this false sense of knowledge leads to extravagant conclusions that do not hold up with further information.

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Toothy and Toothsome

A reader remarks on the use of toothsome in this headline at Discovery-dot-com.

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Mobs and Mobiles

It is etymologically appropriate that the term mob should be associated with a roiling crowd, because the word is a clipped form of mobile.

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3 Cases of Faulty Parallel Structure of Negation

The following three sentences, each followed by a discussion and a revision, illustrate the problem with setting up a “neither . . . nor” construction or similar phrasing without careful attention to grammatical integrity.

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30 Baseball Idioms

The sport nostalgically known as “America’s Pastime” (though football now reigns supreme) is the source of many evocative idioms whose meanings now extend beyond the baseball diamond. Here are thirty of those phrases and their meanings when used past the warning track.

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Join the Freelance Writing Course – 2016 Edition

People love the course because it allows you to create a new or second income source. Freelance writing on the web is something that anyone can do, regardless of your age, location or current profession. All you need is an Internet connection and a word processor.

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3 Cases of Missing Commas

The presence or absence of a single punctuation mark can create confusion or ambiguity about the meaning of a sentence. Three sentences illustrating this problem, each followed by discussion and revision, follow:

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A Hella Cool New Dictionary Entry

Merriam-Webster, publisher of the print and online dictionary that is perhaps most widely consulted by wordsmiths in the United States, has made what some may consider an audacious decision: Hella is now officially a member of the English language.

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Time to Retire “Political Correctness”

The expressions “political correctness” and “politically correct” have gone through so many meanings that it’s no longer possible to know what a speaker means by them.

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Words That Evolved from the Latin Term for “Turn”

A small group of words ending in -volve share an etymological origin of the Latin verb volvere, meaning “turn,” but they have some cousins whose family resemblance is not obvious. Here are some expected and unexpected words with that ancestor in common.

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55 Boxing Idioms

Despite the waning popularity of pugilism, or the sweet science, as boxing is also called, the sport has contributed a number of colorful words, phrases, and expressions out of proportion to its current stature among athletic endeavors. Here is a list of idioms that originated in boxing and were subsequently extended to the world outside the square ring.

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