usingtherightwords

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Eliminate a Space, Change the Part of Speech


Our wonderful language has dozens of words that, if one eliminates a space, one changes the part of speech, thereby changing the word and, to a lesser extent, its definition.

Here are nine examples:

Build up/buildup — the first is a verb meaning to increase, sometimes gradually; the second is a noun meaning the act of increasing, sometimes gradually

Make up/makeup — the first is a verb meaning to pretend to be true or to fit together; the second is a noun meaning the way things are put together (and that includes the beauty products women use to put together their face)

Take down/takedown — the first is a verb meaning to lower without removing; the second is a noun meaning the act of lowering without removing

Take off/takeoff — the first is a verb meaning to remove, depart or release; the second is a noun meaning an imitation or the act of removing, departing or releasing

Take out/takeout — the first is a verb meaning to date, deduct, separate, withdraw or withhold; the second is a noun meaning the act of dating, deducting, separating, withdrawing or withholding (there also is the adjective take-out which refers to the food not being eaten at the restaurant but instead brought somewhere else, usually home)

Take over/takeover — the first is a verb meaning to assume control; the second can be a noun meaning the act of assuming control

Try out/tryout — the first is a verb meaning to attempt; the second is a noun meaning the attempt itself

Wind up/windup — the first is a verb meaning to conclude or finish up; the second can be a noun meaning the act of concluding (or for you sports fans, the pitcher’s motion before releasing the ball) or an adjective meaning having a spring wound up by hand for operation

Work out/workout — the first is a verb meaning to resolve or to exercise; the second is a noun meaning the exercise regimen

Until next time! Use the right words!

leebarnathan.com

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August 17, 2011 - Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , ,

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