Found 211 articles starting with S:

sacrifice - correct spelling

noun and verbExample: The children appreciate the sacrifice of their parents. nounExample: ...

sacrilegious - correct spelling

adjectiveExample: The bumper sticker was sacrilegious and offended many drivers....

safety - correct spelling

nounExample: The child sought the safety of her mother’s arms....

sagacious - vocabulary

adjectiveAble to discern and distinguish with wise perception; having a keen practical sense. What arouses the indignation of the honest satirist is not, unless the man is a prig, the fact that people ...

salacious, salutary

Woe to the person who confuses these two in the wrong situation.Salutary means “wholesome” or “designed to create a healthy improvement.”Salacious means “appealing to sexual desire.”...

salary - correct spelling

nounExample: Though small, his salary put a roof over their heads and food on their plates....

salient - vocabulary

adjectiveConspicuous or prominent; projecting or pointing outward; springing, jumping. Has the art of politics no apparent utility? Does it appear to be unqualifiedly ratty, raffish, sordid, obscene, a...

salutary - vocabulary

adjectivePromoting or favorable to health, healthful; promoting some beneficial purpose, wholesome; designed to effect improvement. Columbus stood in his age as the pioneer of progress and enlightenmen...

Sample Page

This is an example page. It's different from a blog post because it will stay in one place and will show up in your site navigation (in most themes). Most people start with an About page that introduces them to potential site visitors. It might say s...

Sample Page - Build Your Vocabulary

Learn 406 words smart people should know. Ideal for those studying for college-entrance exams...

Sample Page - Common Grammatical Mistakes

This Grammar eBook explores common grammatical mistakes people make. ...

Sample Page - Developing a Powerful Writing Style

This Grammar eBook teaches you how to develop a powerful and c...

Sample Page - Egg on Your Face

This Grammar eBook discusses the Top 25 Grammatical Mistakes. ...

Sample Page - Rules on Punctuation

This Grammar...

Sample Page - The Awful 'Like' Word

Download this free eBook. Send the file to all your contacts. The 'like' word threatens your care...

Sample Page - Understanding the Parts of Speech

This Grammar eBook explains all you need to know about the 8 parts...

sanctimonious - vocabulary

adjectiveMaking an ostentatious display or hypocritical pretense of holiness, piety, or righteousness. Recently, I boarded a flight from Boston to New York. As I sat down, the attendant announced that ...

sandal - correct spelling

nounExample: She slipped her sandals on her feet and went to the beach....

sandwich - correct spelling

noun and verbExample: He fixed a ham sandwich for his lunch. nounExample: We must ...

sanguine - vocabulary

adjectiveOptimistic (and cheerfully so), hopeful, confident; reddish, ruddy.Note: Do not confuse sanguine with sanguinary. Sanguinary means “bloodthirsty” or “accomp...

sanguine, sanguinary

Sanguine might be one of the most misused words in the English language, and that is partly because it has two meanings that seem almost the opposite of each other.Sanguine means “reddish,” ...

sardonic - vocabulary

adjectiveScornfully or bitterly sarcastic, mocking, cynical, sneering. Freud, Jung thought, had been a great discoverer of facts about the mind, but far too inclined to leave the solid ground of “criti...

satellite - correct spelling

nounExample: The spy satellite provided remarkably clear pictures of the camp....

satiate - vocabulary

verbTo satisfy fully the appetite or desire of; to satisfy to excess. I am no longer sure of anything. If I satiate my desires, I sin but I deliver myself from them; if I refuse to satisfy ...

Saturday - correct spelling

proper noun (often serving as an adverb)Example: We have a meeting scheduled for Saturday. proper noun...

Savior vs. Saviour

Languages can shift over time, even in different parts of the world. Many differences in spelling and usage have grown prominent between British and American English. Saviour and savior, for instance, are American and British Eng...

Savior vs. Saviour

Languages can shift over time, even in different parts of the world. Many differences in spelling and usage have grown prominent between British and American English. Saviour and savior, for instance, are American and British English spellings of the...

savvy - correct spelling

adjectiveExample: The savvy writer learned to twist the plot and surprise the reader....

scarcely - correct spelling

adverbGrammar.com's section on the Parts of Speech discusses the demise of -ly adverbs. Click here for that di...

scary - correct spelling

adjectiveNot scarey.Example: My wife hates scary movies....

scene - correct spelling

nounGrammar.com’s section on Problem Words discusses scene and seen. Click here for that discussion.Example: In the...

scenery - correct spelling

nounExample: The beautiful scenery in Virginia attracts many visitors....

scents - correct spelling

noun (plural of the noun scent) and verb (third-person singular of the verb scent...

schadenfreude - vocabulary

A German word meaning the delight in the suffering of others. It often appears capitalized, as all German nouns are capitalized. But in English, the lowercase is perfectly proper.Pronounced: shahd-n-froi-duh. ...

schedule - correct spelling

noun and verbExample: We studied the fall basketball schedule. nounExample: We will ...

science - correct spelling

nounExample: My son studied science in college....

scientific - correct spelling

adjectiveExample: Their scientific findings led to a valuable invention....

scissors - correct spelling

nounExample: She cut the cloth with her scissors....

scurrilous - vocabulary

adjectiveGrossly abusive; expressed in coarse, vulgar language. Every two years the American politics industry fills the airwaves with the most virulent, scurrilous, wall-to-wall chara...

season - correct spelling

noun and verbExample: The rainy season comes in the spring. nounExample: I will ...

secede - correct spelling

verbExample: The disgruntled taxpayers wanted to secede and form a new county....

secretary - correct spelling

nounExample: The secretary of the board read the minutes of the last meeting....

seen - correct spelling

verb (past participle of the verb see)Grammar.com’s section on Problem Words discusses scene and seen. Click here for...

seen, scene

Seen is the past participle of see. Note that it is not the simple past tense of ...

seize - correct spelling

verbNot sieze.Example: She will seize this opportunity for her family....

Seize vs. Cease

The enemy countries ceased fire and then one seized the other’s air force base. Does the above sentence makes sense to you? It uses two homophones i.e. a pair or words that have same pronunci...

Semicolon Goes Outside

The semicolon should be placed outside quotation marks. When the quoted matter ends with a semicolon, the semicolon is dropped. According to the editor, writers do make mistakes when "quoting from research sources";...

Semicolons and Independent Clauses

A semicolon separates two or more independent clauses joined without a coordinating conjunction: The Court required police to warn suspects of their constitutional rights; in doing so, it made judicial histor...

Semicolons Instead of Commas

If the series is long and complex or any one element has a comma within it, separate each element of the series with a semicolon: The company has offices in Greensboro, North Carolina; Atlanta, Georgia;...

Semicolons Separating Elements in a Series

Semicolons Instead of CommasWe reviewed this rule when we discussed the serial-comma rule in the discussion on the comma above. It bears repeating, however. When elements in a series are long and complex or involve internal p...

Semicolons with Quotation Marks

Semicolon Comes OutsideThe semicolon should be placed outside ending quotation marks. When the quoted matter ends with a semicolon, the semicolon in the quotation is dropped: The agen...

seminar - correct spelling

nounExample: He conducted a seminar in effective writing in Shanghai....

sense - correct spelling

noun and verbGrammar.com’s section on Problem Words discusses sense and since. Click here for that discussion....

sense, since

A sense can be any one of the faculties: taste, touch, hearing, smell, sight, or equilibrium. It can also mean “understanding” or “perception.”Since means “from a certain point in time up un...

sensible - correct spelling

adjectiveNot sensable.Example: She wore sensible shoes....

sensuous, sensual

Both words mean “of or appealing to the senses.” The difference in usage is that sensual is more closely associated with physical senses and sexual desires. Sensuous is used to describe things that ...

sentence

A grammatically complete sentence has a subject and a conjugated verb, as in Mary sang. A sentence is also an in...

sentence - correct spelling

noun and verbExample: A complete sentence has a subject ...

sentence adverb

A sentence adverb modifies an entire sentence or clause. According to top authorities, adverbs, including those ending in ‑ly, can modify entire sentences. Here are some examples drawn from reputable sources: ...

separate - correct spelling

adjective and verbNot seperate.Example: They put their two sons in separate bedrooms. adjecti...

separation - correct spelling

nounExample: They dreaded the long separation from each other....

septuagenarian - correct spelling

noun and adjectiveNot septagenarian.Example: Though my father was a septuagenarian, he stilled mowed the yard and ...

sergeant - correct spelling

nounExample: The staff sergeant issued the order....

serial-comma rule

When you join three or more elements in a series, put a comma before the conjunction (usually and or or). Thus: red, white, and blue. This is the s...

Serial-Comma Rule - Red, White, and Blue

When you use a coordinating conjunction to join two elements of a series, no comma comes before the conjunction. But when you join three or more elements, the preferred rule requires a comma before the coordinati...

Serial-Comma Rule ‑ Examples

Here are some examples of correctly using the serial comma: The flag is red, white, and blue. (Three predicate adjectives.)In her will, the woman left jewelry, coins, stocks and bonds, but...

Serial-Comma Rule ‑ Red, White, and Blue (2)

Comma, Comma, and CommaWhen you use a coordinating conjunction (usually and or or) to join two elements of a series, no comma comes before the conjunction. But when you join three or more el...

service - correct spelling

noun, adjective, and verbExample: They provided a valuable service for their customers. noun...

Serving as Other Parts of Speech

Prepositions Serving Double DutyMany words that serve as prepositions also serve as other parts of speech. The word up, for example, acts as a preposition: He looked ...

set, sit

Generally, sit is something you do yourself, while set is something you do to something else.The verb sit is ...

Seven Varieties of Pronouns

The first pronouns our forbears invented were the (1) personal pronouns, words that could substitute for Igor, Amber, and other members of the tribe. Then they invented (2) reflexive and intensive pronouns, those ‑self word...

several - correct spelling

adjectiveExample: We have several programs to propose....

severely - correct spelling

adverbGrammar.com's section on the Parts of Speech discusses the demise of -ly adverbs. Click here for that di...

Sexism - Other Solutions

Other tricks can help you avoid the problem of sexist writing:1. When you need a possessive pronoun, don’t write his or her. Instead, use an article so that the need for a pronoun goes away. ...

Sexism - Proposed Solution

Make your antecedents plural.Refer to people, not a person. Refer to readers, not a reader. Talk about neighbors, not a neighbor. Then you can use they, their...

Sexist Writing

Sexist Writing - A QuagmireWhen Amber, Igor, and Miss Hamrick developed our language, they dreamed up another rule:Pronouns must agree with the gender of the nouns they replace or refer to. A ...

Shall we fix the chapter title?

The chapter title read: “You and him confuse the case of pronouns.” Let’s fix it:You and he confuse the case of pronouns.Remember, when a pronoun acts as a subject, you...

shall, will

In American English, the auxiliary verb will universally shows futurity for all persons: first, second, and third. Thus: I will go to the ...

Shear vs. Sheer

Her sheer hard work sheared all the obstacles in her way to success. Sheer and shear are two words that have the same origin and sound but entirely different meanings. They are often confused...

shepherd - correct spelling

noun and verbNot shephard or sheperd.Example: The shepherd guarded his sheep. noun...

sheriff - correct spelling

nounExample: The sheriff arrested the burglar....

shining - correct spelling

verb (present participle of the verb shine) and adjectiveSee shinning.Example: ...

shinning - correct spelling

verb (present participle of the verb shin)See shining.Example: He was sh...

shish kebab - correct spelling

nounExample: We served shish kebab at the party....

shone, shown

Shone is both the past tense and the past participle of shine, which means “emit light.” (Shine...

should - correct spelling

auxiliary verbGrammar.com’s section on Problem Words discusses should and would. Click here for that discussion....

should, would

In American English, we use the auxiliary verb should with all three persons (first, second, third) to express a sense of duty. Thus: ...

shoulder - correct spelling

noun and verbExample: His injured left shoulder kept him on the sidelines. nounExample: He ...

Showing Abbreviation

A Sentence Ending with an AbbreviationThe period shows abbreviations such as Co., Ave., Corp., Bldg., and a host of others. If a sentence ends in an abbreviated word, the single period serves double duty to ...

shriek - correct spelling

verb and nounNot shreek.Example: She will shriek when she learns about the new car. verb...

sibilant - vocabulary

adjectiveCharacterized by a hissing sound; in phonetics, noting sounds like those spelled with s, sh, z, zh, as in a sibilant consonant.noun...

siege - correct spelling

noun and verbExample: The siege of the city cut off all supplies. nounExample: The military...

sight - correct spelling

noun and verbGrammar.com’s section on Problem Words discusses sight, site, and cite. Click here for that discussion....

signal - correct spelling

noun and verbExample: The traffic signal failed to work and caused an accident. nounExample: ...

significance - correct spelling

nounExample: Congress failed to understand the significance of voter discontent....

significant - correct spelling

adjectiveExample: This significant discovery will revolutionize communications....

similar - correct spelling

adjectiveNot simular.Example: We faced a similar problem before....

similarity - correct spelling

nounExample: The similarity between the two brothers was remarkable....

simile - correct spelling

nounExample: The writer correctly used the like word to create the simile “like a fox.”...

simile - vocabulary

nounA figure of speech in which two dissimilar things are explicitly compared, often introduced with like or as, as in she runs like the wind. Simile and...

similitude - vocabulary

nounSimilarity, likeness, resemblance; a person or thing that is the match or like another. When he had a mind to penetrate into the inclinations of those he had to deal with, he composed his face, his gest...

simple, simplistic

Simple means “easy,” “plain,” or “naive.”Simplistic is a pejorative adjective meaning “overly simple, facile.”Careful writers reserve ...

simply - correct spelling

adverbGrammar.com's section on the Parts of Speech discusses the demise of -ly adverbs. Click here for that di...

simultaneous - correct spelling

adjectiveExample: These simultaneous events will attract large crowds....

sincerely - correct spelling

adverbGrammar.com's section on the Parts of Speech discusses the demise of -ly adverbs. Click here for that di...

singular

Nouns and pronouns are either singular or plural. Nouns typically form their plurals by adding ‑s, (boys), ‑es (torches), or ‑ies (citie...

site - correct spelling

noun and verbGrammar.com’s section on Problem Words discusses sight, site, and cite. Click here for that discussion....

site, sight, cite

Cite means either “to quote” or “to commend” and is usually a verb. As a noun, cite means “a short citation or reference.”...

Situations Requiring the Subjunctive Mood

Let’s explore the modern uses of the subjunctive mood.1. situations contrary to fact 2. wishes 3. suppositions 4. commands1. Situations Contrary to FactLet’s look at the contr...

Six Major Tenses of Verbs

Now you’re ready to conjugate to skip in the six tenses of verbs.To conjugate a verb, you must include all tenses: present, past, future, present perfect, past perfect, and future perfect. You must account for all persons: first, sec...

Skeptic vs. Sceptic

There are many spelling differences between American and British English. In some cases, the same word will be spelled one way in American English and another way in British English. There are times when this inconsistency is ver...

skiing - correct spelling

verb (present participle of the verb ski) and nounExample: He was skiing down the steep trail when the accident occurred. ...

so

Don’t hesitate to start a sentence with So. It’s a coordinating conjunction, and great writers have been starting sentences with conjunctions for hundr...

So our chapter title should read…

You are leaving out the word are.Or perhaps:You’re leaving out the word are....

So the title to this chapter should read…

The chapter title read: “Their mixing up they’re theres.”Do you see the problems? They are mixing up their...

So to fix the title of this chapter…

Our chaper read: “Should you take out it’s apostrophe?”But now you know that “it’s” is a contraction of “it is.” And you know that “its” is the possessive case...

soften - correct spelling

verbExample: He tried to soften the criticism....

solecism - vocabulary

nounA nonstandard or ungrammatical usage, as in There’s lots of cars on the road.A solecism can also refer to a social impropriety, especially in British English. “This [feeding fruitc...

solemn - correct spelling

adjectiveExample: The funeral was a solemn event....

solider - correct spelling

adjective (comparative state of the adjective solid)Example: This material provides solid...

Somber vs. Sombre

Somber and somber are a pair or words that are opposite to homophones that is, they have different spellings but same meaning. The words like these with different spellings and same meaning causes equal confusion to writers as does the homophones ...

somnolent - vocabulary

adjectiveTending to produce sleep; drowsy, sleepy. Gringoire, stunned by his fall, lay prone upon the pavement in front of the image of Our Lady at the corner of the street. By slow degrees his senses ...

sophistry - vocabulary

nounA false, tricky but plausible argument understood to be such by the speaker himself and intentionally used to deceive.  . . . that phrase of mischievous sophistry, “all men are born fre...

sophomore - correct spelling

noun and adjectiveExample: The college sophomore won the award. nounExample: He improv...

sorcerer - correct spelling

nounNot sorceror.Example: The sorcerer performed some intriguing tricks....

soul - correct spelling

noun and adjectiveExample: A glass of wine is good for the soul. nounExample: We enjoy...

source - correct spelling

noun and verbExample: The reporter refused to reveal his source for the story. nounExample: ...

Sources Cited

In these discussions on Grammar.com, I cite some of my favorite sources. To save space, I use the “short citations” below: Short Citation...

souvenir - correct spelling

nounNot souvenire.Example: Caitlin bought a souvenir at the top of the Empire State Building....

special - correct spelling

adjective and nounExample: Their wedding was indeed a special occasion. adjectiveExample: ...

specifically - correct spelling

adverbGrammar.com's section on the Parts of Speech discusses the demise of -ly adverbs. Click here for that di...

specified - correct spelling

verb (past tense and past participle of the verb specify)Example: She specified exactly wh...

specimen - correct spelling

nounExample: He groaned when the doctor asked him for a specimen....

speech - correct spelling

nounNot speach.Example: The Constitution guarantees our freedom of speech....

split infinitive

Every verb has a base infinitive form. We think of the infinitive as the verb with the preposition to in front of it: as in to have, to hold, ...

Split Infinitives

Perhaps no “rule” of grammar sparks more controversy than the “rule” against splitting infinitives. Leading experts on the English language, however, point out that the split infinitive appeared in the great works of English as early as the thirteent...

sponsor - correct spelling

noun and verbExample: The sponsor of the football game produced some clever ads. nounExample: ...

spontaneous - correct spelling

adjectiveExample: The spontaneous demonstration unsettled the mayor and his cronies....

spurious - vocabulary

adjectiveNot genuine, authentic, or true; not from the pretended or proper source; counterfeit. Jargon is the verbal sleight of hand that makes the old hat seem newly fashionable; it g...

stanch, staunch

Stanch is the most commonly accepted spelling for the verb meaning “to stop the flow” of a liquid, but staunch is also an acceptable spelling.Generally thoug...

Start a Sentence with a Conjunction

And you may start a sentence with And.You probably learned in grade school: Never start a sentence with but, and, or any other conjunction. Poppycock!Not on...

States of Adjective: -er or more, -est or most

How to Form the States of AdjectivesYou ask, therefore, how to tell when to use the ‑er and ‑est endings and when to use the helping words more and most? There’s no hard and fast rule, but ...

States of Adjectives: -er or more, -est or most

Adjectives Comparative and SuperlativeYou ask, therefore, how to tell when to use the ‑er and ‑est endings and when to use the helping words more and most? There’s no hard and fast rule, bu...

stationary - correct spelling

adjectiveGrammar.com’s section on Problem Words discusses stationary and stationery. Click here for that discussion....

stationery - correct spelling

nounGrammar.com’s section on Problem Words discusses stationary and stationery. Click here for that discussion....

stationery, stationary

Stationery is writing paper.Stationary means “unmoving.”Example: He sat stationary at his desk for hours addressing invitations on ...

statue - correct spelling

nounNot statute.Grammar.com’s section on Problem Words discusses statue, statute, and stature. ...

statute - correct spelling

nounNot statue.Grammar.com’s section on Problem Words discusses statue, statute, and stature. ...

statute, stature, statue

A statute is an edict, decree, or law passed by a legislature.A statue is a lifelike sculpture that might become valuable when the arms fall off.Stature mea...

stolid - vocabulary

adjectiveRevealing or having little emotion or sensibility; impassive; unemotional. The Indian sat on the front seat, saying nothing to anybody, with a stolid expression of face, as if...

stomach - correct spelling

noun and verbExample: He filled his stomach with junk food. nounExample: He couldn’t ...

Story vs. Storey

One of the many differences between American and British English is the spelling of certain words. Words that mean the same thing are sometimes spelled differently in each language community, for a variety of historical and lingu...

straight - correct spelling

adjective, adverb, and nounExample: He walked in a straight line. adjective...

strategy - correct spelling

nounNot strategery. :-)Example: The company’s president developed a new marketing strategy....

strength - correct spelling

nounExample: His bulging muscles showed his strength....

strenuous - correct spelling

adjectiveExample: The doctor advised him to refrain from strenuous exercise....

stretch - correct spelling

verb, noun, and adjectiveExample: You should stretch before exercise. verbE...

striking - correct spelling

verb (present participle of the verb strike) and adjectiveExample: The builder was striking...

stubbornness - correct spelling

nounNot stubbernness or stubborness.Example: His stubbornness irritated his neighbors....

studying - correct spelling

verb (present participle of the verb study)Example: We are studying effective writing....

stultify - vocabulary

verbTo give an appearance of foolishness to; to render wholly futile or ineffectual, usually in a degrading or frustrating way. A calm virility and a dreamy humor, marked contrasts to her level-headedness—i...

suasion - vocabulary

nounThe act of urging, advising, or persuading; an instance of persuasion. All gentle cant and philosophizing to the contrary notwithstanding, no people in this world ever did achieve their freedom by goody...

subject

The grammatical subject of a sentence or clause is a noun, a group of words acting as a noun, or a pronoun. The subject names what...

Subject-Verb Agreement - Plural Subjects

Watch OutBefore winding up our discussion of conjunctions, we need to visit the notion of subject-verb agreement in number. When you write a plural subject, you must use a plural verb. When you write a singular subject, you m...

subjective case

The personal pronouns (and the relative or interrogative pronoun who) exhibit case. The case of a pro...

Subjects Joined by Other Connectors

Watch OutWatch out for along with, as well as, together with, not to mention, and others. These are not conjunctions and do not form plural subjects.Writers often use other connecti...

Subjects Joined by “and”

A compound subject consists of two or more words acting as the subject of the sentence. When the series is joined conjunctively, that is, with the word and, in the vast majority of cases the subject is plural and requires a plural v...

Subjects Joined by “or”

When you have a series joined disjunctively by the word or, the number of the verb is determined by the number of the noun closest to the verb, that is, the last in the series. One apple, one orange...

subjugate - vocabulary

verbTo bring under total control or subjection; to conquer, master, or enslave. To ask strength not to express itself as strength, not to be a will to dominate, a will to subjugate, a will ...

subjunctive mood

First, understand this: The word mood has nothing to do with frame of mind, as in happy or sad. It actually refers to mode, which is the attribute of a verb suggesting the speaker's attitude t...

subordinate - correct spelling

adjective, noun, and verbExample: He uses too many subordina...

subordinate clause

A subordinate clause is also called a dependent clause. A dependent clause cannot stand by itself as a sentence. It must attach to an independent clause to form what is called...

subordinating conjunction

We have a long list of subordinating conjunctions. These words are used to start a subordinate clause, which can act as an adjective, adverb, or noun...

subordination

Each sentence has three essential parts: (1) the subject, (2) the verb, and (3) the other stuff, which is governed by the kind of verb chosen. Writers then begin to add to this basic ...

subpoena - correct spelling

noun and verbNot subpena.Example: The judge issued a subpoena for the records. noun...

substantial - correct spelling

adjectiveExample: He bought a substantial interest in the company....

substantive - vocabulary

adjectiveBelonging to the real nature of a thing, essential; possessing substance, having practical importance. In law, substantive pertains to provisions of law dealing with rights and duties, as distinguish...

subterfuge - vocabulary

nounA device or conduct used to evade a rule, escape a consequence, or hide a course of conduct; something used to hide the true nature of conduct or event. Men felt a chill in their hearts; a damp in their...

subtle - correct spelling

adjectiveExample: Though the changes were subtle, he noticed them at once....

succeed - correct spelling

verbExample: He wanted to succeed in his career....

success - correct spelling

nounExample: “Nothing succeeds like success.” — Sir Arthur Helps, “Realmah” (1868)....

successful - correct spelling

adjectiveExample: The successful venture returned handsome profits to the investors....

succession - correct spelling

nounExample: The people celebrated his succession to the throne.Example: He inherited the property through intestate ...

sudden - correct spelling

adjectiveExample: The sudden appearance of his mother at the party embarrassed the college student....

sufficient - correct spelling

adjectiveExample: He provided sufficient funds for his children’s education....

supercilious - vocabulary

adjectiveExhibiting haughty, arrogant contempt or superiority for those considered unworthy. In a quick turn of her head, in a frank look, a boyish pout, in that proud glance from lowered lids, so pity...

superfluous - vocabulary

adjectiveBeing more than is needed or sufficient; excess. Superfluous wealth can buy superfluities only. Money is not required to buy one necessary of the soul....

superintendent - correct spelling

nounExample: The superintendent of the apartment building enforced the rules....

superlative state

Most adjectives and adverbs come in three states. The positive state describes the basic attribute (the hot plate, ...

supersede - correct spelling

verbNot supercede.Consider this usage note from Merriam-Webster: Supercede has occurred as a spelling variant of supersede since the 17th century, and it is common in current publi...

supersede, supercede

The correct spelling is supersede. With an -s, not a -c....

supplant - vocabulary

verbTo force out another, through strategy or schemes; to take the place of. Socialists propose to supplant the competitive planning of capitalism with a highly centralized planned economy....

supposition - vocabulary

nounConjecture, assumption; something that is supposed; an opinion based on incomplete evidence. Another and far more important reason than the delivery of a pair of embroidered gloves impelled Hester, at t...

suppress - correct spelling

verbExample: The judge will suppress this evidence....

surely - correct spelling

adverbGrammar.com's section on the Parts of Speech discusses the demise of -ly adverbs. Click here for that di...

surfeit - vocabulary

nounExcess, an excessive amount, as in a surfeit of political speeches; overindulgence in eating and drinking; general disgust caused by excess.verbTo supply with anything to ex...

surprise - correct spelling

noun and verbExample: This news was a surprise to all. nounExample: His announcement will ...

surrogate - vocabulary

nounA person appointed to act for another, a deputy; a substitute; a surrogate mother. In law, in some states, a surrogate is a judicial officer charged with probating wills and administering estates....

surround - correct spelling

verb and nounExample: The police plan to surround the crack house. verbExample: The archite...

susceptible - correct spelling

adjectiveExample: He is susceptible to the flu virus....

suspense - correct spelling

nounExample: The suspense is killing us....

suspicious - correct spelling

adjectiveExample: He was suspicious of the strange behavior of his accountant....

sweat - correct spelling

verb and nounExample: He learned to sweat the details. verbExample: The ...

switcheroo noun

I coined this term to describe two-word pairs. The two words are spelled and sometimes pronounced identically. One word acts as a noun, the other as a verb.A classic example is change. A nouny ...

sycophant - vocabulary

nounA servile flatterer, especially of those in authority or influence; a fawning parasite. Your future connection with Britain, whom you can neither love nor honour, will be forced and unnatural, and being...

syllable - correct spelling

nounExample: Good writers strive to use one-syllable words....

symmetrical - correct spelling

adjectiveExample: The symmetrical pictures framed the hallway....

sympathy - correct spelling

nounGrammar.com’s section on Problem Words discusses sympathy and empathy. Click here for that discussion.Example: We ex...

Sympathy vs. Empathy

The terms sympathy and empathy is an addition to th...

synonym - correct spelling

nounExample: He checked the dictionary to find a short synonym of the long word....

synonymous - correct spelling

adjectiveExample: The preacher believed that Hollywood is synonymous with immorality....

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