Confusing Words Clarified: Group B; Homonyms, Homophones, Homographs, Synonyms, Polysemes, etc.
(lists of "B" sections that are organized into what for some people are confusing groups of words)
A classic story tells how Plato had defined man as a featherless two-tooted animal, and his students agreed. The next day, Diogenes pulled the feathers off a cock and took it to Plato.
"Here's Plato's man," he said.
It was an embarrassing moment for Plato. Thereafter he corrected the definition to "a featherless two-footed animal with flat nails".
Ever since Plato's description, man has never ceased to define man, and has constantly sought a more meaningful self-definition. Voltaire altered the Platonic version, in Candide, to "man is a featherless biped with a soul".
Another unknown author created, "Man is the only animal that eats when he is not hungry, and drinks when he is not thirsty."
Efforts have been made to help you grasp the meanings of various words that may be confusing so you can utilize them with greater accuracy in your communication.
Your comments and suggestions are always welcome by writing to: E-mail Contact (just click it for an e-mail form) or by typing, email@example.com, as the address in your e-mail heading.
If you have any problems understanding the pronunciation symbols, go to this Pronunciation Chart for clarifications.
Mason tried to give his dog a bath in the bathtub.2. A chemical solution in which to immerse something: The scientist prepared an acid bath in which to immerse the metal object.
Justine will bathe the baby after she eats.
While Ursula and Ned were on vacation in England, they decided to bathe in the famous Roman bath that was near their hotel. In fact, they found out that they could bathe their dog in the special pet bath next to the ancient bath.
Clarice walked across the street, lifting her skirt to avoid the puddle, only to create a picture of bathos by stepping into the manure left by a passing horse.
The stage play, based on the story of a farm boy, created a sense of pathos in the audience as they remembered their own experiences.
Because of the melodramatic bathos of the film, Shelby found it difficult to generate any genuine pathos for the main character.
2. A hollow metal rod with a heavy rubber tip or tips that is wielded and twirled by a drum major or drum majorette: The majorette twirled the baton as she led the marching band.
3. A short staff carried certain public officials as a symbol of office: The mayor gave the baton of authority to the new mayor.
4. A cudgel or heavy stick carried by some police officers: The standard police equipment in Hiram's town also includes a heavy baton.
2. To thrive and to prosper, especially at another person's expense: Adolph could only batten like a leech on the financial savings of other people.
In anticipation of difficulties with rioters during the convention in the city, the Police Chief planned to batten for any possibility, including equipping each of the officers with a baton.
During the entrance parade, the police captain marched at the head of the parade holding a baton high for the others to follow.
The lead batter for the team had many hidden talents, including how to make a delicious batter for a chocolate cake.
Remember the differences between these words: Jayne wore a rather bizarre dress as she bought a cake at the village bazaar.
Bazaar is a word for a charity sale spelled in a bizarre way.
2. To have reality in one's life: Shakespeare’s character, Hamlet, pondered reality: "To be or not to be...".
The bee flew from flower to flower collecting pollen which would be made into honey.2. A get together or gathering of people for a specific purpose; such as, a competition between schools or the completion of a joint project: The sixth grade students won the spelling bee.
The women met once each month for a quilting bee.
A bee is an insect that teaches us two lessons: One is not to be idle and the other is not to get stung.
Dudley's teacher gave him an assignment to write a silly sentence or two. This is what Dudley wrote: "To be or not to be a bee, that is the question. Is it more painful to be stung by a bee or to be accidentally hit by a BB?"
A beach is the seaside where people rarely bother to hide their hides.
The gray squirrel was perched on the branch of the beech tree that was growing near the beach of the local lake.
2. To speak about or to discuss something in a round about way: Emery tried to beat around the bush instead of providing a direct answer.
The politician beat around the bush when trying to explain the proposed policy.
The bulbous root of the beet is characteristically dark red.
When Deanna saw the chopped up purple vegetable on her plate, it looked like a beat beet.
Barney's and Bianca's cook on the ship was very responsive to music as illustrated when she used to chop the beet root for lunch to the rhythm and beat of Island music.
Haley did not beat around the bush when telling Jarvis how the beat of the music inspired her.
2. To make happy; to bless with the completion of celestial enjoyment: Barbara was blessed with spirits that beatify one's life.
Kirby's friends and Dion agreed to beautify the nave of the church in anticipation of the announcement that the Pope will beatify the local heroine.
My new beau made a deep and respectful bow before my mother.
Leann smiled and helped Merlin to adjust the bow of his necktie; then she asked if he would be going out with his new bow for some archery practice.
Haley stood on the butte to admire the sunrise. Her sister remarked, "That is really a beaut!"
Nelda has been putting all the empty bottles in the bin at the curb side for the recycling truck to pick up.
2. A framework for carrying a dead body to the grave: The mourners followed the bier to the cemetery.
A sad fact of life is that if a person drinks too much beer and then drives too fast, he or she may wind up being carried away on a bier to his or her grave.
2. A heavy mallet with a large wooden head used to mash potatoes or to hammer cobblestones into place: The workers completing the road repair used a beetle to set the stones into place.
Leann noticed a strange colored beetle climbing on the betel plant that is growing in her garden.
Charley grabbed a heavy beetle and banged on the tree to scare the beetle off. It flew off to land on the beetle (projection) of the roof of the garage where Charley stored his beetle or hammer.
2. To understand and accept on faith; to have an opinion or conviction as to the truth of something: Looking out the window, Colby saw enough to believe that it would rain that day.
3. To have trust in the ability, worth, etc., of someone or something: The football team hasn't won a championship in many years, but their fans still believe that they will win one day.
4. To regard the existence of God as a reality and to have religious beliefs: Elisabeth goes to church every week to worship God and because she really does believe that Christ is her Savior.
2. To learn about and to experience something through touch or physical exploration: To read Braille, Maxwell feels the raised dots on the page.
3. To be aware of, to be conscious of a state of mind or impression, to experience sympathy or compassion with respect to a situation or individual: Shana expects to feel great sympathy with those who have recently lost their jobs.
4. To believe or to think something: Ester couldn't help but feel the need to say something about the behavior of the neighbor's dog when no one is home.
Frieda really wants to believe that her team will win this season because she is convinced that they can do it. She also can't help but feel that it is important for people to have something of value to have confidence in.