Page:A Desk-Book of Errors in English.djvu/214

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A Desk-Book of

of birds; as, "a seige of cranes." Note especially the orthography of these words.

sieve, seive: Homophones of widely different meaning. A sieve is a utensil for sifting; a seive is a rush or rush-wick.

sight: As a colloquialism meaning a very great quantity, number, or amount; as, "a sight of people," the noun is to be avoided, as in the still more objectionable expression, "powerful sight," in which the adjective is altogether misapplied.

similar. Compare same.

sin. Compare crime.

since, ago: Since is used generally to imply time only recently lapsed; ago, to imply time long past. "How long since did he call?" "Nelson fought Trafalgar a century ago."

siree; sirree Bob: Vulgar and silly intensives of affirmation.

site. Compare cite.

skidoo: Recent slang for "get out" which is to be preferred.

skin, to: A vulgarism for "to deprive by extortion or trickery; get the better of," either of which is preferable.

skunk: As applied to a person of mean disposition or of objectionable character the term is to be condemned as unsuited to polite society no matter how fittingly it may apply to the individual designated by it.