Page:A Desk-Book of Errors in English.djvu/38

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as, so
at length
A Desk-Book of

as, so: Discriminate between these words; as is used in comparing persons or things of approximate caliber or size; so when the comparison is unequal.

as, that: Discriminate carefully between these words. As is often improperly used for that. Do not say "not as I know of "; "I do not know as I shall go." Say, rather, "Not that I know of"; "I do not know that I shall go."

ascent must be distinguished from assent, its homonym. The former is derived from Latin ad, to, + scando, climb, and means the act of climbing; the latter is from Latin ad, to, + sentio, feel, and means expression of concurrence in a proposition, acquiescence.

aside: An Americanism for apart. Not "auxiliary words aside," but "auxiliary words apart."

asparagus. Compare sparrow grass.

assent. Compare ascent.

assume, perform, discharge: We assume responsibilities to perform a task and thus discharge our duty. Duties are not performed.

astonish, surprise: Terms which some writers claim are not synonymous or interchangeable, but usage has made them so. To astonish is "to affect with wonder and surprise"; to surprise is "to strike with astonishment by some unexpected act or event."

Obviously, when one says, " I am surprised," he uses an expression exactly equivalent to "I am