May
24

few vs. a few / little vs. a little

The difference between “few” and “a few” Both “few” and “a few” indicate a small number of something. However, use of the little word “a” before the word “few” makes a very important difference in meaning.  Basically, “a few” communicates a positive idea…

May
23

fewer vs. less

“Fewer” is traditionally used when comparing quantities of individually countable things or people—as for example, when we say “There are fewer shops downtown nowadays,” or “I eat fewer salads in the winter,” or “There were fewer people in the audience than I expected.”…

Apr
28

Judging the quantity of quantities

The actual amounts referred to by expressions of quantity can be vague and hard to pin down.  Below is a chart of quantity expressions listed in a divided continuum from completely negative (“none”) to very positive (“a vast number of”).  Numerous quantity expressions…

Apr
6

Wordsmyth News

• New! Wordsmyth’s Spelling activity for assessment
• Database update with newly added headwords, phrases, images, and animations
• Idiomatic phrases in Wordsmyth dictionaries

Jun
30

WOTD: trite

adjective ineffective or stale because of frequent repetition; commonplace; hackneyed.Some people consider “Have a nice day” to be a trite expression.The plot of his new novel is trite and predictable. See the full entry edit

Jun
29

WOTD: replica

noun a duplication or copy, esp. one smaller than the original.A replica of the famous airplane hangs in the museum. See the full entry edit

Jun
28

WOTD: abandon

transitive verb to leave (someone or something) with no intention of returning or taking up possession again.They abandoned the old car in the ditch.He abandoned his family and moved far away. noun freedom from restraint or inhibition.The Mardi Gras crowds danced in the…

Jun
27

WOTD: opulence

noun the condition of being opulent.The opulence of the manor houses contrasted sharply with the lowly dwellings of the poor. See the full entry edit

Jun
25

Weekly Quiz

With the Wordsmyth Vocabulary Center activities, you can study these words, play games with them, and assess your knowledge of their meanings with a quiz. Click here to go to the Vocabulary Center. This word list will have been loaded for you. Just…