Archives



Wordplay Wednesday – pseudonyms

A pseudonym is a fictious name that a person assumes for a particular purpose. The¬†prefix ‘pseudo’ means false. A person’s true or original name is their orthonym. Pseudonyms can be used for any purpose such as to hide gender or race. Here are some examples of writers who have taken on a pseudonym (also referred […]


Wordplay Wednesday – oxymoron

This refers to a figure of speech in which contradictory and opposite ideas are linked. It is similar to a paradox, but the oxymoron is contained within a phrase whereas the paradox is contained in a statement. Examples of oxymorons: cruel kindness thunderous silence deliberate mistake known secret friendly fire constant change Oxymorons in literature: […]


Wordplay Wednesday – pangrams

Anybody who has learned how to type will probably know what a pangram is. It is a sentence that uses every letter of the alphabet. Here are some well know examples: The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. Pack my box with five dozen liquor jugs. How quickly daft jumping zebras vex. None […]


Wordplay Wednesday – Tom Swifty

Last week’s Wordplay Wednesday was all about puns and they received a great response from everyone. Even though there are no classes this week, I thought that I would continue with the theme of puns and give you a variation – the Tom Swifty. The term comes from a series of books written by Victor […]


Wordplay Wednesday – pun

A pun is a joke exploiting the different meanings of a word or the fact that there are words of the same sound and different meanings. Here are some examples: I wondered why the basketball was getting bigger. Then it hit me. I’m reading a book about anti-gravity. It’s impossible to put down. Did you […]


Wordplay Wednesday – etymology

Etymology is the study of word origins – where they come from and how and where they were created. Many words that we use today come from different languages that have evolved and changed over time. To discover where a word comes from often puts it in an entirely new light. The following are some […]


Wordplay Wednesday – pleonasm

Pleonasm is an unusual word for a simple idea. Pleonasm is the use of more words than are necessary to convey meaning. Students who use redunant words in their writing will lose marks for the coherence of their piece of work. If a word is not necessary and does not add to the overall meaning […]


Wordplay Wednesday – malapropisms

The term malapropism comes from a play called ‘The Rivals’ by Richard Brinsley Sheridan, which was first performed in 1775. This play featured a character called Mrs Malaprop who frequently misspoke, with great comic effect. Her name, of course, comes from the French term mal √° propos, meaning inopportune or not to the purpose. When […]