Sunday, September 14, 2008

Commonly misused/misspelled words and phrases (Part 57)

Here are some more words that I see misused from time to time:

Childish vs. Childlike

Wrong: She displayed a childish innocence.

Right: She displayed a childlike innocence.

Childlike refers to the guileless, trusting, innocent nature of young children. On the other hand, adding the –ish suffix attaches unfavorable connotations of immaturity: silliness, poutiness, selfishness, and the like.

Nucular vs. Nuclear

Wrong: Nucular weapons are a bane on mankind’s existence.

Right: Nuclear weapons are a bane on mankind’s existence.

There is no such word as nucular (and it’s pronounced NEW-clee-er, not NOOK-yoo-ler or NYOOK-yoo-ler).

More next time.


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