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You probably don’t think about the printing press very often, but in its heyday it completely changed the world. Little wonder, then, that a number of expressions from the world of printing have made it into everyday English. Next time you come out with the following phrases, give yourself a little pat on the back […]more
As the year draws to a close, there is only one event on everyone’s minds here at Oxford Dictionaries HQ – and it ain’t Christmas. The announcement of our Word of the Year 2017 got us thinking about the highs and lows of the lexical year. Have you ever wondered which words are looked up […]more
The word ‘stereotype’ comes from the French adjective stéréotype, which itself comes from the Greek στερεός (solid) and τύπος (type). It was originally a term used in letterpress printing, referring to a solid plate of metal cast from a mould taken of a forme (a body of type secured in a metal frame for printing). […]more
When we think of clichés, we often think of a phrase that is trite and hackneyed, a person who stereotypically conforms to social constructs and labels, or something that is predictable and lacks ingenuity. The word cliché is of French origin, and originally meant a stereotype block bearing text that was used to produce multiple […]more
When it’s all said and done at the end of the day, I can say I made a difference in the world. Does the above cliché-ridden sentence (taken from a transcript of a 2004 TV show) make you cringe? If so, join the club (whoops, another one). Although it can be hard to avoid them, […]more