Monday, 28 September 2009

Confusing Words, Commonly Misused

Written by Patti Stafford from Patti Stafford


Today I want to cover words that we often get confused and use out of context. We will not be covering the proper use of words like, “their, they’re, there” or “two, too, to.”

We’re going to discuss words that are a bit more complicated. Many of us may not even think about these words and have no clue if they are used improperly or out of context, but for those who are familiar with these words, they know when they’ve been misused.

These words can be a bit obscure.

Implicit: Suggested or to be understood though not plainly expressed; implied.
Explicit: Clearly stated and leaving nothing implied.

-The explicit instructions from Bob gave Natalie enough clarity to resolve her confusion about the new software.

-Implicit in her first speech to her summer students was Ms. Whitmore’s Draconian attitude toward dallying and late assignments.

Illusion: A false idea or conception; belief or opinion not in accord with the facts.
Allusion: Playing with, indirect reference, to refer to in a casual or indirect way.
Elusion: Escape or avoidance by quickness or cunning.

Illusive: Unreal.
Allusive: Using allusion.
Elusive: Hard to grasp or retain mentally; baffling.

-The magician is very elusive with his allusions as he creates the illusion that something is real and not sleight of hand.

Aggravate: It means “to add to”, the trouble or condition must already exist before you can aggravate it.
Irritate: It means “to annoy”. You irritate someone and then you aggravate them.

-Dirt can aggravate an open wound.
-Janis is in a good mood, I think I will try to irritate her.

Farther: Use for reference to distance.
Further: Use for reference to time or quantity.

-Alex drove farther than anyone.
-You should enroll in classes to further your education.

Tortuous: Full of twists, turns; crooked, winding road.
Torturous: Inflicting mental of physical pain.

-Driving down the tortuous road was torturous.

Are there any words that you see commonly misused? Please share, we’d love to hear them.

Patti Stafford Written by Patti Stafford from Patti Stafford
Posted on September 21st, 2009

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