This category contains 57 posts

To do vs. to-do

Is it to-do or to do? This is something I always have to look up when I’m typing or writing it, so I thought I’d add a reminder here in my blog. My tip is: If it’s used as an adjective, before a noun, it’s hyphenated, as in ‘to-do list’. If it’s used as a noun, … Continue reading

The word cogitate

A couple of months ago I wrote a post on the word loquacious and said how much I liked the sound of the word.  A reader recently commented on that post (thank you) and said that they liked the sound of the word cogitate.  Having not used that word before, I looked it up. I agree, it’s quite a … Continue reading

Note 359 – The word loquacious

Whilst watching a television quiz show at the weekend, the contestant was being asked the meaning of the word loquacious.  Out of the three options on the screen, I picked the answer ‘nearby’!  The correct answer was in fact ‘talkative’.  Merriam Webster online dictionary defines loquacious as: Full of excessive talk: wordy Given to fluent or excessive talk According to … Continue reading

Note 344 – The word capricious

I heard the word capricious on the television yesterday when someone was referring to the English weather. Although I wasn’t entirely sure of the exact definition of the word, I quite liked the sound of it. According to Merriam-Webster online dictionaries, the adjective capricious (which has been in use since 1601) means: 1. Likely to … Continue reading

Note 334 – The word insatiable

Cambridge online dictionary defines insatiable as a desire or need “too great to be satisfied”.  According to, nouns to which insatiable is often applied are appetite, desire, curiosity, thirst, hunger, need and greed.  Sentences using the word insatiable The man had an insatiable curiosity about life He constantly read books to feed his insatiable thirst for knowledge … Continue reading

Note 329 – The controversy about the word irregardless

When I saw the word irregardless written in The Elements of Style by William Strunk Jr. and E.B. White, I was drawn to what it said beside it, which was “it should be regardless”. They explain that people have a desire to add in a prefix to make a word negative; however, by adding ‘ir-‘ … Continue reading

Note 326 – The use of the word gubbins

I’ve heard my work colleague use the word gubbins a few times, but never thought of looking it up until today. He says it’s a slang term that may be a substitute for ‘stuff’. Here are a couple of examples he gave me: I was clearing out some box files full of gubbins Reading through … Continue reading

Note 309 – The word verdigris

My dad plays the trumpet and in one of his music books it told him about a substance called verdigris which can form in trumpets or any brass instruments. This image found on Wikipedia (author Richard Webb) shows this green pigment caused by the corrosion of the copper in the bronze. You may also have seen … Continue reading

Note 307 – The words harry and harried

I was watching a programme with the title ‘Just Harried’ (from the Charmed series) the other day and I was unsure of the meaning of harried. According to Merriam the first known use of this word was in 1609 and it defines harried as “beset by problems: harassed”. The verb form is harry defined on Merriam-Webster … Continue reading

Note 298 – The Trapezius Muscle

I thought it was about time that I understood what muscles are causing the frequent pain I am experiencing in my head, neck and back. The doctor has told me today that it is a fan-shaped muscle started at the back of the head, so I decided to do some research. Wikipedia explain that the … Continue reading

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