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Word Meanings: Actual vs What We Think

September 2, 2015

Here are ten words that are used in the English language which are frequently used in the wrong context.


1  Travesty      

Actual meaning: A mockery or parody.

What we think it means: A tragedy or unfortunate event.


2  Ironic            

Actual meaning: Contrary to what you might expect.

What we think it means: A funny coincidence.


3  Peruse          

Actual meaning: To review an article carefully/in depth.

What we think it means: To skim read an article.


4   Bemused     

Actual meaning:  Confused.

What we think it means: Amused.


5  Compelled   

Actual meaning: To be forced to do something (willingly or unwillingly).

What we think it means: To willingly do something. To feel like you need to do something.


6  Nauseous     

Actual meaning: To cause nausea.

What we think it means: To feel sick.


7  Conversate   

Actual meaning: THIS IS A MADE UP WORD.

What we think it means: To hold a conversation.


8   Redundant  

Actual meaning: Superfluous. Able to cut out.

What we think it means: Repetitive.


9   Enormity      

Actual meaning: Extreme evil.

What we think it means: enormousness.


10 Terrific          

Actual meaning: Causing terror

What we think it means: Awesome. Fantastic.

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