Friday, August 29, 2008

Commonly misused/misspelled words and phrases (Part 53)

"Please, sir, may I have some more oft-misused words?"
"Why, of course, young man. Here you go.

Blond vs. blonde

Wrong: He’s a tall, good-looking blonde.

Right: He’s a tall, good-looking blond.

A blonde-haired woman is a blonde, while a blond-haired man is a blond. (Some grammarians suggest that blond should be used for both genders, but blonde is still most often used for women.)

Fish vs. fishes

Right: There are many fish in the sea.

Right: There are many kinds of fish in the sea.

Right: There are many fishes in the sea.

While fish (plural) can refer to multiple piscine creatures, fishes specifically means multiple species of fish. A fishing boat may catch tons of the same kind of fish, while a marine biologist may collect a number of different fishes.

Please come back when you're hungry for more (words, not fish).


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