Thursday, October 8, 2015

Intensive purposes

People often use words and phrases in speech and writing that they have heard or misheard. A common one is: “Intensive purposes”. The correct phrase is “for all intents and purposes”. It means “practically speaking.”

Another annoying error is “I could care less”. If you could care less it means you do care. What people mean is “I could NOT care less”. In other words I don’t care at all.

“Decimate”: This means to take ten percent. It’s often used incorrectly to indicate something is almost totally destroyed. Taking ten percent is a lot but it’s nothing like wiping something out completely. If you decimate someone’s army you still have a very big battle ahead of you to get rid of the other 90%.

Travesty: Means mockery. Many people use it incorrectly to mean tragedy.

For twenty-five commonly misused words check out:

Helen Woodall

Helen is available to line edit and/ or content edit fiction and non-fiction. Rates on application.

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