Page:A Desk-Book of Errors in English.djvu/231

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Errors in English

transpire is condemned by the best writers in the sense of happen. "The verb transpire formerly conveyed very expressively its correct meaning, viz., to become known through unnoticed channels—to exhale, as it were, into publicity through invisible pores, like a vapor or gas disengaging itself. But of late, a practise has commenced of employing the word ... as a mere synonym to to happen.... This vile specimen of bad English is already seen in the dispatches of noblemen and viceroys."—Mill, Logic, bk. iv. ch. 5, p. 483.

truth. Compare veracity.

try: This word is often erroneously used for "make." Do not say "Try the experiment yourself" but "Make the experiment." An experiment can only be tried, as a speech (in its literal, that is verbal, sense) can only be spoken.

try and: A common but incorrect locution. Do not say "Try and come to-day," but, rather, "Try to come to-day."

tumble to: Slang for "to understand." Do not say "Do you tumble to it?" Say, rather, "Do you understand it?"

turn down: Undesirable, though perhaps expressive slang for "reject"; "ignore"; or "dismiss." In commercial circles, this expression has wide usage but is not the less inelegant and should be avoided. A proposition is quite as fully disposed of when it is