Home Geeky 14 Words That You're Using Wrong

14 Words That You’re Using Wrong

Words are constantly evolving and changing every year making it very hard to be a master of the English language. Hell, even selfie is in the dictionary now. But did you know that many of the words that we use on a daily basis are words that you’re using wrong?

Let’s see if you can make it through these 14 words without realising you’ve been using one wrong – we certainly couldn’t!


words you're using wrong
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What we think it means: Something that is funny

What it actually means: Something that is contrary to what to you expected

Irony is one of those words that you’re constantly using wrong. People continually get mixed up between coincidence and irony. Think of sarcasm, which is irony, as you are saying something which has two opposite meanings.


words that you're using wrong
via Gifcave.com

What we think it means: Something tragic or an unforeseen event

What it actually means: A mocking or parody

Tragedy and travesty do sound pretty similar so you can understand why people get the two confused. They are definitely different, though.


words that you're using wrong
via Gifhell.com

What we think it means: To have a quick glance at something

What it actually means: Study something in-depth

Peruse always seems to be associated wrongly with shops i.e. I spent the afternoon perusing the shops. However if you were actually perusing the shops in great detail you’d be spending days doing it.


words that you're using wrong
via Tumblr.com

What we think it means: To feel ill/sick

What it really means: To cause feelings of sickness

What you are actually feeling is nauseated. Think of this example, if a baby is sick and this makes you feel sick it is the actual baby vomit that is nauseous while you are nauseated. Nauseous is just one of those words that you’re using wrong that’s hard to get right.


words that you're using wrong
via Warriorcatsrpg.com

What we think it means: Having a really interesting conversation

What it actually means: 

Yeah, this word was totally made up by the internet.


words that you're using wrong
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What we think it means: Amused

What it actually means: Confused

Bemused may look like be-amused but in reality they are nothing similar. To be bemused means you’re confused, which may be amusing to others.


words that you're using wrong
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What we think it means: Really big, enormous

What it really means: Really bad or evil

Well enormity does sound like it could be related to enormous, but actually it means something which is really evil. Use it like – “the enormity of Myra Hindley’s crimes” – which looks at the level of evil in her actions rather than the size of the crimes.


words that you're using wrong
via Buzzfeed.com

What we think it means: Something really, really good

What it really means: Something horrific that causes fear

Yeah, we use this wrong too. Think of a velocirapter as being terrific as it’s a big scary dinosaur that’s going to eat you. Which is really not good. We think this this a word that you’re using wrong which is going to be very hard to get right now.


words that you're using wrong
via Tumblr.com

What we think it means: To do something by choice

What it actually means: Being obligated or forced to do something

We often get confused with compelled thinking  it means that we have decided to do something after thought. It doesn’t. Think of compelled as with someone who has been sentenced to jail. They are compelled to go, but not by choice.


words that you're using wrong
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What we think it means: The best!

What it actually means: The last item on a list

There’s not much to ultimate, everyone just seems to get it wrong. If the last thing on your to do list is to clean your room, then ultimately you must clean your room. Simple.


words that you're using wrong
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What we think it means: Bored

What it actually means: You have no interest

Just remember uninterested means you’re bored. Disinterested means you’re probably daydreaming about cats.


words that you're using wrong
via Tumblr.com

What we think it means: To utterly destroy something

What it actually means: To destroy 10% of something

Once you realise you can see the ‘dec’ in decimate relates to 10, but the real meaning of decimate still makes little sense.


words that you're using wrong
via Lifehack.org

What we think it means: Figuratively

What it actually means: Something actually

You have not literally slept for days. If you had you would have been in a coma. Literally is a terrible word.


words that you're using wrong
via Reddit.com

What we think it means: Without regard

What it really means: 

This is another word we made up. You never know, it might make it to the dictionary.

Steph Cosway
Journalism graduate and 100% geek. I have worked in writing for the last 7 years as well as dabbling in a science laboratory. So if I ever stop writing, it's because I've been in a lab experiment and turned into a super villain. I'm particularly interested in video games, comics and Harry Potter. Oh and I have lots and lots of cats.


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