Page:A Desk-Book of Errors in English.djvu/44

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A Desk-Book of

bad to illustrate the meaning "containing errors or faults; incorrect; as bad grammar." badly: This word should never be used for greatly or for exceedingly, very much, etc. Do not say "Your father will miss you badly"; say rather, "... will miss you greatly." Instead of "I wanted that badly" say "I wanted that very much" or "I was in great need of that." "The carpet needs to be beaten badly" is a ludicrous blunder for "The carpet badly (or very much) needs to be beaten"—the construction connecting badly with beating rather than with needs which it qualifies.

balance, remainder: These terms are not synonymous. A bookkeeper obtains a balance as by addition or subtraction. A mathematician deducts a smaller sum from a greater and obtains a remainder. Do not say "The balance of the evening was devoted to music," but "the rest of the evening. . ."

ball up (to), is slang for "confuse," "embarrass" either of which is to be preferred.

baluster: Compare banister.

band, beat the. Compare beat.

banister is a corrupt form of baluster which is one of the individual pillars which unite to form a balustrade.

banquet: This word designating a sumptuous feast in honor of some person or event should not be used as the synonym of "dinner" or "supper," which both designate less formal functions.