'Decimate': Use It However You Want

11.17.2021 - By Word Matters

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Few words in the English language get people as riled up as the supposed "incorrect" use of 'decimate.' Does it have to keep its Roman meaning of "reduce by one tenth" or can it generally mean "destroy," as it's been used by millions of speakers for hundreds of years? (Hint: see title.)

Then we'll look at the language of invitations, and the rescinding thereof: yep, it's the difference between 'disinvite' and 'uninvite.'

Hosted by Emily Brewster, Ammon Shea, and Peter Sokolowski.

Produced in collaboration with New England Public Media.

Transcript available here.

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