Page:A Desk-Book of Errors in English.djvu/76

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A Desk-Book of

things, sometimes carelessly as "a daisy time," for "a pleasant time." In speaking of a woman, "Ain't she a daisy" is a vulgar way of saying "Isn't she charming."

damage should never be used for "cost" or "charge." Damage is injury or harm as to character, person, or estate; cost and charge involve or imply expenditure of money.

dance, to lead one a: A colloquialism for "to divert one from a desired course, and thus create delay in its accomplishment." There is but little in the expression to recommend it.

dander is a vulgarism for "anger" and as such should not be used.

dangerous: Avoid the vulgar use of this term in the sense of "dangerously ill." A man near death may be dangerously ill, but he can not be dangerous.

dare, durst or dared, daring: "You daresn't" "he durstn't" are frequently used—the former always incorrectly, the latter generally so; for in nine cases out of ten, where the expression is used, the speaker desires to signify the present and not the past. The form is inelegant, but under certain conditions may be grammatically correct. You dare not; he dares not (daresn't): this for the present. In the past only, he durst not (or durstn't).

dead, deceased: Discriminate between these words. One may refer correctly to a dead man or a