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20 misused English words that make smart people look silly

by Volker Weber

Often, it’s the words we perceive as being more correct or sophisticated that don’t really mean what we think they do. There are 20 such words that have a tendency to make even really smart people stumble.

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Comments

Thanks for sharing, Volker!

Abdelkader Boui, 2015-08-18

One that I hear pretty much daily on the UK news: the use of 'refute' as a synonym for 'deny', presumably because it is meant to sound more sophisticated. As in 'I refute this allegation', with no further evidence being presented.

I notice that this definition is even creeping into dictionaries now, but is a creation of the last decade or so - before that, refutation involved proof!

Nick Daisley, 2015-08-19

Good list. How about abuse of send/sent?

Maikel Maes, 2015-08-19

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I explain difficult concepts in simple ways. For free, and for money. Clue procurement and bullshit detection.

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