Garner’s Usage Tip of the Day: judicial; judicious.

judicial; judicious. “Judicial” = (1) of, relating to, or by the court {judicial officers}; (2) in court {judicial admissions}; (3) legal {the Attorney General took no judicial action}; or (4) of or relating to a judgment {judicial interest at the rate of 4% annually}. Sense 4, which is confined to legal contexts, is suspect because it hasn’t yet gained admission to most dictionaries. “Judicious” is a much simpler word, meaning “well considered, discreet, wisely circumspect.” E.g.: o “The duo put on a lively show that was highlighted by the judicious use of video and an inflatable cow skull.” Claudia Perry, “Brooks, Dunn Turn Dome into Honky-Tonk Heaven,” Houston Post, 28 Feb. 1995, at A6. o “He spoke [about] . . . the need to be judicious in helping emerging democracies develop institutions to thrive in this changed geopolitical landscape.” Stuart Ingis, “Law Students with Laptops Link Bosnia to the Internet,” Christian Science Monitor, 28 Feb. 1997, at 19. For information about the Language-Change Index click here. Quotation of the Day: “We all think we can write competently, but it is no secret . . . that, on the whole, professors in the U.S.A. write rather badly.” George Sherburn, “Teaching of English as a Professor,” in The Great Torch Race: Essays in Honor of Reginald Harvey Griffith 58, 59 (Mary Tom Osborne ed., 1961).
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