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8 word facts to help you win quizzes

If you’re a fan of quizzes, you’ve probably been in the situation of trying to remember or work out facts about language – and we’re here to help. Here are 9 language facts to help you win quizzes…

compliment

Quiz: ‘compliment’ or ‘complement’?

Compliment and complement are pronounced in the same way, but they have very different meanings. Take our quiz to find out if you can tell these two tricky words apart. Read more about the difference between compliment and complement.

rain

Weather idioms: rain

There are plenty of idioms in English that mention the weather – it is, after all, a British stereotype that we can’t hold a conversation without addressing the weather (and, no, it’s not always raining). That national obsession has influenced expressions like it never rains but it pours (misfortunes tend to arrive all at the […]

good book

theater curtain

How well do you know the language of theatre?

All the world may be a stage, but that doesn’t mean that everyone speaks the language. Sometimes theatre can seem like its own little world, with a specialized vocabulary and coded references. (What do they mean by ‘Scottish play’?!) Check out our video to see how people on the streets in New York City did, […]

Video: what is the origin of the word ‘OK’?

Glasgow numpty

OED appeals: can you help us find earlier evidence of the word ‘numpty’?

Can you help us? OED Appeals is a dedicated community space on the OED website where OED editors solicit help in unearthing new information about the history and usage of English. Part of the process of revising words and phrases for the OED involves searching for evidence of a word’s first recorded use in English, […]

Video: what is the origin of the word ‘quiz’?

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