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How to Write a Book Review

Do You Recommend the Book? Over the course of your 500-word article, you should answer the main question on the reader's mind: did you like the book or not? In many review formats, the reviewer gives the book a star

What Does Be There or Be Square Mean?

What Does Be There or Be Square Mean? The phrase be there or be square is used to invite and encourage someone to go somewhere, to “be” wherever “there” is, whether that’s a specific location like a park or restaurant

What Does the Jig Is Up Mean?

What Does the Jig Is Up Mean? As you might have guessed from the example above, the idiomatic English phrase the jig is up means that one’s trick or deception has been discovered, and thus won’t be allowed to continue,

What Does Cry Havoc and Let Slip the Dogs of War Mean?

What Does Cry Havoc and Let Slip the Dogs of War Mean? There are several ways to interpret the meaning of the phrase cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war as intended by Shakespeare centuries ago, which we’ll

What Does Less Is More Mean?

What Does Less Is More Mean? The saying is used to convey that less of something—a smaller amount of it—can at times be better than a large amount of it. That simplicity is often the better approach versus one that

What Does Don’t Judge a Book By Its Cover Mean?

What Does Don’t Judge a Book By Its Cover Mean? The phrase don’t judge a book by its cover means that you shouldn’t make a judgement about someone or something—be it a book or otherwise—based solely on their or its

What Does Bushel and a Peck Mean?

What Does Bushel and a Peck Mean? Simply put, the idiomatic phrase bushel and a peck means “a lot.” It’s used to describe a large amount or great deal of something. As the introduction to this post alluded, it’s typically

What Does Oh the Humanity Mean?

What Does Oh the Humanity Mean? Put simply, the saying oh, the humanity means “how horrible” or “how terrible.” It’s sometimes said to be a synonym for the exclamation oh my God. Indeed, as you’ll read in just a moment,

What Does All That Glitters Is Not Gold Mean?

What Does All That Glitters Is Not Gold Mean? Gold has long been associated with and symbolized wealth and success. After all, it has been used throughout the world as currency and for art and ornamentation; Olympians and other competitors

What Does Wax Poetic Mean?

What Does Wax Poetic Mean? Put simply, to wax poetic is to speak about a topic in a poetic way. Typically, it means to talk about something in a verbose manner; in other, ahem, words... to be wordy! That makes

What Does Chip on Your Shoulder Mean?

What Does Chip on Your Shoulder Mean? If you have a chip on your shoulder, you have a bad attitude and get angry easily. This is because you feel like the world has wronged you in some way. You may

Does “As Well As” Need a Comma?

Is This a Simple Comparison? Ask yourself the question, "Is this a simple comparison?" If the answer is yes, you've sidestepped a lot of heartache. When you use the phase "as well as" to compare two things, you won't need

What Does a Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words Mean?

What Does a Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words Mean? As illustrated above, this phrase is used to express that it can be easier to show something in a picture than to describe it by speaking words or using the

What Does Abandon All Hope Ye Who Enter Here Mean?

What Does Abandon All Hope Ye Who Enter Here Mean? Although abandon all hope, ye who enter here is considered an idiomatic expression, it’s not exactly your typical idiom. That’s because idioms have figurative rather than literal meanings that can’t

What Does Have Your Cake and Eat It Too Mean?

What Does Have Your Cake and Eat It Too Mean? The saying have your cake and eat it, too is used to express that when there are two desirable but mutually exclusive or contradictory options, you can’t have both at

Port vs starboard?

What is the difference between port and starboard? There are several unambiguous references to ship areas and duties, whether it’s a wharf, rudder, or “paying the Devil.” But unless you're accustomed to life on the sea, incorporating nautical terminology into

What Does Practice Makes Perfect Mean?

What Does Practice Makes Perfect Mean? This idiomatic and proverbial expression (more below) is used to convey the idea that the way to become skilled at something is to practice it often. In other words, doing something over and over

What Does Let Sleeping Dogs Lie Mean?

What Does Let Sleeping Dogs Lie Mean? Although the expression originally did have to do with furry canines (more below), that’s no longer the case. When you hear or see it used today, it means “to ignore a situation or

What Does By and Large Mean?

What Does By and Large Mean? Simply put, by and large means “in general” or “generally speaking.” It’s another way of saying “on the whole” or “for the most part.” Use it when you want to say that something is

Compliment vs Complement: What’s the difference?

WHAT ARE HOMOPHONES? Let’s begin by understanding what homophones are.  It’s a term in the English language that refers to words having the same pronunciation but completely different spellings and/or meanings. So, now that you know that compliment and complement

Defence vs Defense: What’s the difference?

COMMON QUESTIONS Some of the common questions that these words may give rise to are as follows: – Do these words have different functions or different meanings in a sentence?Defence vs Defense - are they the variants of the same

What Does Like Father Like Son Mean?

What Does Like Father Like Son Mean? Unlike other common phrases explored at The Word Counter, it’s fairly easy to determine the meaning of the expression like father, like son just by looking at the words that comprise it. While

What Does Birthday Suit Mean?

What Does Birthday Suit Mean? Put plainly, birthday suit means “nakedness” or “unclothed/bare skin.” When someone says they’re wearing their birthday suit, they’re speaking comically and ironically, as they’re not actually wearing anything at all! The phrase alludes to the

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What Does the Road to Hell Is Paved With Good Intentions Mean?

What Does the Road to Hell Is Paved With Good Intentions Mean? In general, this common idiom and proverb expresses the idea that good intentions don’t necessarily guarantee good results, and that good intentions matter little—if at all—if they don’t

What Does the Buck Stops Here Mean?

What Does the Buck Stops Here Mean? This popular phrase is used to indicate a full acceptance of responsibility. When someone says the buck stops here—or the buck stops with me, another form of the expression—they’re promising to take necessary

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What Does No Quarter Mean?

What Does No Quarter Mean? In everyday conversation, the idiom no quarter means “no mercy.” Typically the phrase is preceded by a form of the verb give; you may also hear the expression used with some form of the verb

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What Does Bush League Mean?

What Does Bush League Mean? As mentioned above, bush league can mean one of two things. As a noun, bush league means “minor league.” A minor league is a group of teams in a sport that are not in that

What Does Sleep Tight Mean?

What Does Sleep Tight Mean? Simply put, the common expression sleep tight means “sleep well.” If you tell someone to sleep tight, you’re wishing them a good night’s rest—slumber that is comfortable, safe, sound, warm, cozy, deep, peaceful, uninterrupted… and

What Does End All Be All Mean?

What Does End All Be All Mean? Put simply, the idiom end all be all describes something of the utmost importance—a person or thing that is absolutely essential and seen as the best. In fact, whatever is said to be

How Many Words Did Shakespeare Invent?

Why Do We Credit Shakespeare? The Guardian quotes Shakespeare lecturer Dr. David McInnis: "The OED [Oxford English Dictionary], which saw its original volumes published between 1884 and 1928, includes more than 33,000 Shakespeare quotations...with around 1,500 of those 'the first

What Does Mortal Coil Mean?

What Does Mortal Coil Mean? As you’ll discover in a moment, the expression mortal coil comes from perhaps the most famous soliloquy (a monologue spoken to oneself) in all of Shakespeare’s plays. Every word and phrase in this soliloquy has

What Does Alas Poor Yorick Mean?

What Does Alas Poor Yorick Mean? When used alone, the phrase Alas, poor Yorick has come to serve as a commentary on the fleeting nature of life. Perhaps you may hear it said at a funeral, when a person, thinking

What Does Brevity Is the Soul of Wit Mean?

What Does Brevity Is the Soul of Wit Mean? This expression can be used in two different ways. To uncover its meanings, let’s first look to the definitions of the words brevity, soul, and wit.  Brevity means short in duration.

What Does Beauty Is in the Eye of the Beholder Mean?

What Does Beauty Is in the Eye of the Beholder Mean? Although this phrase is considered an idiom, and typically idioms have figurative meanings that are difficult to figure out just by looking at the words that comprise them, we

What Does Actions Speak Louder Than Words Mean?

What Does Actions Speak Louder Than Words Mean? The phrase actions speak louder than words means that what you do (your actions) is more significant and carries more weight than what you say (your words). Put simply, the expression conveys

Jealousy vs envy?

What is the difference between jealousy vs envy? Jealousy and envy are negative emotions that people feel in response to desire, power, and a lack of self-confidence. But when it comes to describing our feelings on paper, how do we

Words That Start With I: Your Scrabble Cheat Sheet

Here are some words that start with I [2-15 letter words] 15-Letter Words immaterialities - Noun | Things of no important consequence immunomodulator - Noun | A drug or another substance that affects the immune system improvisational - Adjective |

What Does Beating a Dead Horse Mean?

What Does Beating a Dead Horse Mean? When you hear this expression spoken or see it written, it’s describing the act of putting in effort or focus on something that’s impossible or no longer relevant or important. In other words,

What Does Brown-Noser Mean?

What Does Brown-Noser Mean? A brown-noser is a person who tries very hard to please and earn the approval of someone—usually somebody in a higher, more powerful position than them—in order to benefit themselves in some way. How do they

What Does Pennies From Heaven Mean?

What Does Pennies From Heaven Mean? As an idiom, pennies from heaven means unexpected good luck or good fortune; indeed, it’s often used to indicate a benefit that is financial in nature. Typically, the expression is used to describe an

What Does Riled Up Mean?

What Does Riled Up Mean? Riled up is an idiom. Typically, idiomatic expressions have figurative rather than literal meanings that can’t be deduced just by looking at the words that comprise them (keep reading to learn more). But that’s not

What Does Once Bitten, Twice Shy Mean?

What Does Once Bitten, Twice Shy Mean? You might expect this expression to be used when someone has been bitten, say by a dog or another animal. But that’s not the case. You see, as an idiomatic expression, this phrase

Payed vs. paid?

What is the difference between payed vs. paid? The words payed and paid sound the same, but when it comes to word meanings, they are completely unrelated. The word "paid” involves the concept of compensation, but “payed” is a nautical

How Many Words Are in the Bible?

The Hebrew Bible The term "Tanakh" refers to the entire Hebrew Bible. In total, the Tanakh consists of three sections, which include the Torah (also called the Pentateuch), the Neviʾim, and the Ketuvim. The entire text contains twenty-four books, mostly

What Does the Show Must Go On Mean?

What Does the Show Must Go On Mean? Although typically it can be difficult to look to the individual words within an idiomatic expression to try and understand its intended meaning, that’s not exactly the case with the phrase the

Lets vs let’s?

What is the difference between lets vs. let’s? Lets and let’s share a pronunciation because they have the same word, let, and a letter “s” at the end. But if you’re new to learning English grammar, you should know that

Breath vs. breathe?

What’s the difference between breath and breathe? If somebody said, “I thought my train my think,” you’d be quick to say, “don’t you mean, ‘your train of thought?’” Terms like think vs. thought are exactly like breath vs. breathe. While

What Does Keep on Truckin Mean?

What Does Keep on Truckin Mean? Keep on truckin means to keep going—to continue on or to carry on. As you can probably tell from the paragraph above, the idiomatic phrase is typically used to provide encouragement. It’s used to

What Does Blood Is Thicker Than Water Mean?

What Does Blood Is Thicker Than Water Mean? This phrase is used to express the idea that family ties are more important than other social ties, i.e. friendships or romantic relationships; that family bonds, or those connections you have with

What Does Bite the Bullet Mean?

What Does Bite the Bullet Mean? If you wince or flinch when hearing or reading the phrase bite the bullet, it makes sense—and you’re not alone! Biting down on a bullet would be incredibly painful and unpleasant. And that gets

What Does Bird’s-Eye View Mean?

What Does Bird’s-Eye View Mean—Literally and Figuratively? Stop to think about it a moment, taking the words as they are and recalling the meanings you know, and you can probably easily determine the literal definition of bird’s-eye view: A view

What Does Bar None Mean?

What Does Bar None Mean? To understand the meaning of this idiomatic phrase, we must first look to one very specific definition of the word bar. In American English, bar can mean many different things and is used as many

Beck and call or beckon call?

What is the difference between beck and call and beckon call? If you’re well-versed in classic literature or surrounded by people who use idioms, there’s no doubt that you’ve heard the phrase ‘at someone’s beck and call.' This particular phrase

What Is Plagiarism, and How Do You Avoid It?

Direct Plagiarism When most people think about "stealing" someone else's work, this is what they imagine. Direct plagiarism might involve copying someone else's text word-for-word without quotation marks. Even if you include a citation, you must be sure to also

Yay or nay?

What is the difference between yay or nay vs. yea or nay? People often wonder how to use the term ‘yay or nay,’ and whether it’s interchangeable with ‘yea or nay.’ But when it comes down to researching the answers,

“My Apology” or “My Apologies”?

What is the difference between “my apology” and “my apologies”? Have you ever wondered whether it’s more grammatically correct to say “my apology” and “my apologies”? The good news is that either phrase is grammatically correct. But there are circumstances

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The Abbreviation for Million: What Is It and How to Use It?

What Is the Abbreviation for Million? Million is a noun and an adjective. Its plural is millions. There is one widely accepted abbreviation. m. Both upper and lowercase M would be the correct abbreviation. Because the capital letter M is

month calendar

The Abbreviation for Months: What Is It and How Is It Used?

What Does the Word Mean? According to Dictionary.com, the word month is defined as: month[ muhnth ] noun 1. Also called calendar month. any of the twelve parts, as January or February, into which the calendar year is divided.2. the

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Which vs. that: What’s the difference?

What’s the difference between that vs. which? The confusion between that and which lies in their use as pronouns for a modifying relative clause. In a sense, we use these terms to shout out, “look here!” and to make our

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What Does Under the Weather Mean?

How is “Under the Weather” typically used? If someone says they’re feeling under the weather, they mean that they’re feeling slightly sick or ill. Typically, someone will use this expression when they’re mildly unwell—such as when they have a cold,

driving

Off the hook: What’s it mean and when should you use it?

The 4 different meanings of "Off the Hook" The phrase off the hook can mean four different things: 1. To be relieved of or free from burden, commitment, obligation, duty, pressure, or responsibility; to escape or avoid an unpleasant situation

money

Money talks: What’s it mean and when should you use it?

The phrase is commonly used when writing or speaking about politics, as it’s believed by some in the political environment that money can buy votes or cooperation. Of course, the expression is also often used in the business world. Here

Whose-vs.-who’s

Whose vs. who’s: Which one should you use and when?

What is the difference between whose and who’s? Anyone who grew up watching television shows like “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” or “Who’s Afraid of the Dark?” has likely taken for granted how whose and who’s are used similarly, but

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Insure vs ensure: What’s the difference?

What is the difference between insure and ensure? Insure and ensure are very similar words and used often enough to think they are used synonymously. While both words carry the meaning of guaranteeing somebody of something, the correct usage of

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Ad nauseam: What’s it mean and when should you use it?

How do you use Ad nauseum in a sentence? The literal Latin translation of ad nauseam—pronounced ad naw-zee-uhm—is “to nausea” or “to sickness.” It is thought to originate from a longer Latin phrase, argumentum ad nauseam, which is why today

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Carte blanche: What’s it mean and when should you use it?

What Does Carte Blanche Mean? Carte blanche is a noun meaning, according to the English dictionary, unconditional or full authority. If someone gives you carte blanche, they give you the power and permission to carry out an action in any

cats

Cat’s in the cradle: What’s it mean and when should you use it?

How do you use Cat’s in the Cradle in a sentence? If you hear someone today use the expression “cat’s in the cradle,” they’re likely describing a relationship in which one person doesn’t make enough time for the other, whether

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Hang in there: What’s it mean and when should you use it?

How to use "hang in there" in a sentence Hang in is one of many phrasal verbs. This phrasal verb is most often used, however, as part of the full phrase hang in there. To understand the meaning of this

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Ignorance is bliss: What’s it mean and when should you use it?

Ignorance Is Bliss Broken Down Into the Sum of Its Parts To uncover the meaning of ignorance is bliss, let’s first look at the individual words that comprise this saying. Ignorance (noun): Ignorance is the state of being ignorant, or

feet

Abbreviation for feet: What is it and how is it used in a sentence?

What Is The Abbreviation For Feet? Feet Noun The plural form for foot There is one common abbreviation for feet which is the international standard. Ft Usually, there is a space between the abbreviation and the number its measuring. For