Garner’s Usage Tip of the Day: Miscellaneous Entries.

Miscellaneous Entries. *self-confessed is a common redundancy — e.g.: “A court that frees a self-confessed [read ‘confessed’] murderer on a technicality would seem to bear responsibility for any harm that criminal may do in the future.” Mario Pei, Words in Sheep’s Clothing 86 (1969). Language-Change Index — *"Self-confessed" for “confessed”: Stage 3. selvage (= a specially made edge of fabric or paper) is the standard spelling. It outnumbers the variant spelling *"selvedge" by a 50-to-1 ratio. semestral is the preferred adjective corresponding to semester — not *"semestrial." send; transmit. For general purposes, “send” is much preferable to “transmit,” which has been justly criticized as a word overworked in official documents. The Evanses note that “transmit” is “labored elegance unless it carries the definite idea of passing something through or over an intermediary” (Dictionary of Contemporary American Usage at 187). sense. Generally, when “sense” means “logic” or “sensibleness,” it’s followed by “in” {what’s the sense in delaying any further?}. An exception: when “sense” denotes “meaning,” it’s followed by “of” {what is the sense of that word?}. *Invariably inferior forms. For information about the Language-Change Index click here. ——————– Quotation of the Day: “One technical editor said that parallelism problems account for 60 percent of the difficulties in the prose she edits.” William D. Andrews & Deborah C. Andrews, Write for Results 66 (1982).
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