All Women's Talk

11 Everyday Words We All Use Incorrectly ...

By Holly

Even if english is your native language, there are everyday words we all use incorrectly without even noticing. Most people don't realize that they're using them wrong, because everyone around them uses them wrong, and the cycle continues. However, it's about time you've learned some new facts about the language so that you can use it correctly. Here are some of the most popular everyday words we all use incorrectly:

1 Travesty

'Travesty' frequently gets confused with 'tragedy.' While a tragedy is a devastating event, a travesty is a parody. It's a word you should use when a famous song is mocked by having its real lyrics replaced with silly ones. This is one of the everyday words we all use incorrectly without even realizing it.

2 Terrific

We all use "terrific" in order to explain something fantastic. However, terrific really means the same thing as horrific. You know the song There's No Place Like Home for the Holidays? Well, when they say the traffic is terrific, you now know what they mean.

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3 Peruse

Most people use this word in the opposite way. Peruse doesn't actually mean to skim or to browse. It means to observe something in depth. You're not perusing when you're at the supermarket, you're perusing when you're studying from a textbook.

4 Enormity

Enormity doesn't mean that something is enormous, even though they sound similar. Enormity actually means that something is extremely evil.

5 Ultimate

If you say that dogs are the ultimate animal, you're using the word wrong. It doesn't mean "the best." It means "the last."

6 Disinterested

Uninterested means bored. Disinterested means neutral. They sound super similar, but they aren't the same. So if you don't really have an opinion on what you're doing, you should use the word disinterested.

7 Obsolete

People use this word to describe items that aren't used often. However, obsolete actually means that something is not produced or needed anymore. So if something, like a unicycle, is still being produced, you can't say that it's obsolete.

8 Consent

According to the dictionary, consent isn't a very strong word. It doesn't mean that you're eagerly agreeing to do something. It means that you're passively agreeing to do it, even though you're not all that thrilled about it happening.

9 Nauseous

Nauseous doesn't mean that you're feeling sick. It means that you're capable of causing the feeling of sickness in others. So you shouldn't say that the steak you ate made you feel nauseous. The word you're looking for is nauseated.

10 Bemused

Bemused may sound like amused, but it's not the same thing at all. To be bemused means that you're puzzled or confused. So use it when you're trying to figure out a math problem and not when you're trying to watch a cat video on YouTube.

11 Decimate

This word is usually used when talking about destroying a building. However, it does not mean to annihilate. It actually means "to reduce by ten percent," which isn't as easy to use in conversation as the incorrect definition is.

Now that you know how to use these words, you should never make a mistake with them again. Of course, you'll probably hear others use them wrong, so don't hesitate to share your newfound knowledge. What other words do you find people using incorrectly?

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