Page:A Desk-Book of Errors in English.djvu/216

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A Desk-Book of

sorry, grieved: Distinguish between these words in their use. If we are sorry, it is for a matter concerning ourselves; but when we are grieved, another is in some way connected with the case.

sort of. Compare kind of.

sparrow grass sometimes abbreviated grass are common corruptions in domestic use for asparagus. There is no excuse but lack of education or lack of intelligence and courage to use the right word when the majority prefer the wrong for this vulgar provincialism.

speciality, specialty: These words should not be confounded. The distinction between them is clearly illustrated by the editor of the Standard Dictionary as follows: "Speciality is the state or quality of being special; specialty is an employment to which one is specially devoted, an article in which one specially deals, or the like."

spectator. Compare audience.

spell should not be used for " period of time. " Do not say "I shall stay a spell" if you mean you will "remain a little while," the latter is to be preferred.

splendid: Often used indiscriminately and inanely especially by women; as in the expression "perfectly splendid," to express very great excellence. Splendid means imposing; as, "a splendid woman"; shedding brilliant light or shining brightly; as, "a splendid