Susan 馃悵 Rooks, The Grammar Goddess

4 years ago 路 2 min. reading time 路 visibility ~10 路

chat Contact the author

thumb_up Relevant message Comment

Tuesday Tricksters, Medal -- Mewl

) 7 SOW die


worst / wurst


oir Somes het / tM "Quince / quints  &

flew / flu / fue Breath / breathe / breadth 8

ind alike

iffe 5 [ore [or
have different spelling Da
have different Pigs chute / shoot
counsel / council
[OO its [its 7
dae genes / jeans
397 gifted / gui sold / 50d
team / teem ay guik / 80!
3 your /
assistance / assistants ike clause / claws


cents / sense

sent / scent

So here it is: the last day of February. How did this come on so quickly?

It's also a Tuesday, which means I have another chance to remind writers about an important fact: Spellcheck, for all its wonderfulness, does only one thing -- it checks spelling. It does not and cannot check usage.

Below are five more pairs of words that spellcheck will accept, but they don't mean the same things.

Writers -- be careful with your words!

Medal (n.): a flat piece of metal stamped with a design or an inscription commemorating an event or a person, often given as an award; (v.): to win a contest

Meddle (v.): To interfere in someone else's business

Meddler (n.): one who interferes in someone else's business

Medlar (n.): a fruit tree with small fruits that look like rosehips

Meeting (n.): a gathering; an assembly (v.): to come together; to meet

Meting (v.): distributing or giving out

Metal (n.): any of a category of electropositive elements that usually have a shiny surface, are generally good conductors of heat and electricity, and can be melted or fused, hammered into thin sheets, or drawn into wires

Mettle (n.): high quality of character or temperament; spirit; courage; ardor

Mewl (v.): to cry weakly聽with a soft, high-pitched sound; to whimper; to whine; (n.): a soft cry or whimper; an act of mewling

Mule (n.): the sterile hybrid offspring of a male donkey and a female horse, characterized by long ears and a short mane; a stubborn person; a person who has been hired to move illegal drugs from place to place; a backless slipper or shoe, often with a closed toe

Were any of these new to you?

I had never heard of聽medlar, and I wasn't sure about mewl.


For more on these or any English word, go to, a terrific resource that shows words and their definitions in several dictionaries.


Thanks for taking the time to read this post.聽If it has helped you in any way, I hope you will . . .聽

Find it relevant or聽share聽it, so your connections can see it and perhaps learn too.聽

Comment聽so you can be seen by my connections. You never know who would be interested in YOU (just ask聽Deb Helfrich聽how well it works for her!).聽

Brush Up on Your
American Grammar Skills

Grammar Goddess Communication
Look Smart. Sound Smart.

SusanR@GrammarGoddess. com


Do the associates in your company聽look and sound as smart as they are?聽They would if they could take one of my聽Brush Up on Your Skillsworkshops right where they work. If your company hires outside experts to teach any topic to its associates, please share my posts and聽website聽with your Human Resources or Training Manager.聽

Are you a member of an association聽or other group that is looking for a speaker for one of its meetings?聽There are a lot of communication-based topics that I could talk about that would make for a lighthearted and interesting presentation.聽

thumb_up Relevant message Comment
Thanks so much for sharing my post here, Donna-Luisa Eversley!
Thanks, \ud83d\udc1d Fatima Williams! I am actually having a very good day -- I hope you are too!
Thanks for commenting and sharing my post, Franci\ud83d\udc1dEugenia Hoffman! I always appreciate your taking the time, and I'm sure others do as well.
Trust me, @Scott Craig, I can't spell for squat. Spellcheck does its one job very well, and I'm sure glad of that!
Yes, Paul \, we writers do have to be on our toes!
I had seen the word mewl, and I think I even heard it, but I wasn't too sure of its definition, John Rylance. I thought it had something to do with sound -- as it does -- but I hadn't known about the soft, whispering part. Good for you to have heard of them all!
Thanks for letting me know, Joyce Bowen!

John Rylance

4 years ago #4

Just patting myself on the back I knew them all. Mewl, I know from Shakespeare's "Seven Ages of Man" speech, " ........ the infant mewling and puking in the nurse's arms"
Medlar is a new one for me too. The others I knew. Whoo Hoo!!

馃悵 Fatima G. Williams

4 years ago #2

I know all of these and Tuesday are tricky because of you. Have a lovely day lady with mettle 馃槏. Susan Rooks
I love your posts

More articles from Susan 馃悵 Rooks, The Grammar Goddess

View blog
10 months ago 路 2 min. reading time

Expectations: Lessons Learned from Frozen Food Boxes

I often buy frozen 鈥渄inners鈥 because it鈥檚 easier t ...

2 years ago 路 3 min. reading time

When You Don't Know ... Are You Willing to Ask for Help?

Do you remember being a kid and wanting to grow up ...

3 years ago 路 2 min. reading time

Thursday Thoughts: Trolls

Are you familiar with this term? We're seeing evid ...