Photos: Inauguration Day in Washington

You Don't Say

You Don't Say John E. McIntyre writes about language, usage, journalism & arbitrarily chosen subjects.
In a word: sybaritic

Each week The Sun's John McIntyre presents a relatively obscure but evocative word with which you may not be familiar, another brick to add to the wall of your vocabulary. This week's word:

SYBARITIC

The people of Sybaris, a Greek city in southern Italy on the Gulf of Tarentum, were famed in classical antiquity for their wealth and their fondness for voluptuous living, at least until their city was

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Coastal elites? We've been here before

To read the current codswallop about the good people of the American heartland and their grievances against the snooty elites of the coasts is to be reminded how little changes in the Republic. H.L. Mencken’s “The Husbandman,” published in 1924 in the fourth series of his Prejudices, covers the same ground with characteristic zest, brio, and overstatement.

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Reluctantly, I judge your book on grammar

In reviewing books here, I focus on positive comments. After all, I have a backlog of reading that should last me to Methuselah's age, so why spend time on books that would waste people's time 

Today I'm making a reluctant exception because a book that has come to hand, though not compelling itself, points me to a larger issue.

The book is Delusions of Grammar: The Worst of the Worst (St.

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What you need to know about grammar and usage

You were never taught formal English grammar, or you discover that some of much of the grammar and usage you were taught is nonsense. You feel a need to learn more, but where and how? Garner’s Modern English Usage is a formidable 1,056 pages, his Chicago Guide to Grammar, Usage, and Punctuation 583 pages. Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary of English Usage is nearly a thousand.

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In a word: epiphany

Each week The Sun's John McIntyre presents a relatively obscure but evocative word with which you may not be familiar, another brick to add to the wall of your vocabulary. This week's word:

EPIPHANY

Friday, January 6, was the Feast of the Epiphany, in which Christianity celebrates the revealing of Jesus Christ to the gentiles.

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Just say it once
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