Page:A Desk-Book of Errors in English.djvu/74

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A Desk-Book of

word, thought, deed, or desire, whether by omission or commission, with the divine law; vice is the habitual deviation from moral rectitude.

crow, a colloquialism for exult.

crush implies to force out of shape, therefore, it is pleonastic to say "crush out," of a mutiny.

cultivation, culture: Discriminate carefully between these words. While one of the various senses of cultivation is culture, culture should be used only of the development of the individual.

cunning, meaning "artful," and by extension " innocently artful," and hence "bright," "amusing," or "characterized by quaint and playful moods," is often improperly introduced to imply "dainty," "choice," especially if applied to anything diminutive. Such usage is not permissible. A kitten may properly be said to be cunning, but not a brooch, although (in archaic usage) that may exhibit the cunning or skill of the artificer.

curious, in such expressions as "It is a curious fact" has been hypercritically censured. The propriety of the usage is unquestionable. "Curious first … denoted a state of mind, interest or diligence in inquiry or prosecution; then it was predicated of things which exhibit evident tokens of care (cura), dextrous application, ingenuity; and, as such things are out of the common and are apt to arrest attention, it naturally acquired the sense of 'novel,'