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Homographs, Heteronyms And Other Self-Quarantine Musings

Aug 9, 2020

Image: Where homogrphs & heteronyms live - clipartpanda.com
 
English IS an amazingly hard language to figure out sometimes.  Just check this out.:
 
Homographs are words of like spelling but with more than one meaning. A homograph that is also pronounced differently is a heteronym.  You think English is easy??  I think a retired English teacher was bored...
 
1) The bandage was wound around the wound.
2) The farm was used to produce produce.
3) The dump was so full that it had to refuse more refuse.    
4) We must polish the Polish furniture..
5) He could lead if he would get the lead out.
6) The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert..
7) Since there is no time like the present, he thought it was time to present the present.   
8) A bass was painted on the head of the bass drum.
9) When shot at, the dove dove into the bushes.
10) I did not object to the object.   
11) The insurance was invalid for the invalid.
12) There was a row among the oarsmen about how to row.
13) They were too close to the door to close it.
14) The buck does funny things when the does are present.     
15) A seamstress and a sewer fell down into a sewer line.
16) To help with planting, the farmer taught his sow to sow.
17) The wind was too strong to wind the sail.
18) Upon seeing the tear in the painting I shed a tear..
19) I had to subject the subject to a series of tests.
20) How can I intimate this to my most intimate friend?    
 
Let's face it - English is a crazy language. There is no egg in eggplant, nor ham in hamburger; neither apple nor pine in pineapple. English muffins weren't invented in England or French fries in France . Sweetmeats are
candies while sweetbreads, which aren't sweet, are meat. We take English for granted. But if we explore its paradoxes, we find that quicksand can work slowly, boxing rings are square and a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig.
 
And why is it that writers write but fingers don't fing, grocers don't groce and hammers don't ham? If the plural of tooth is teeth, why isn't the plural of booth, beeth? One goose, 2 geese. So one moose, 2 meese? One index, 2 indices? Doesn't it seem crazy that you can make amends but not one amend? If you have a bunch of odds and ends and get rid of all but one of them, what do you call it?
 
If teachers taught, why didn't preachers praught? If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat?
 
Sometimes I think all the English speakers should be committed to an asylum for the verbally insane. In what language do people recite at a play and play at a recital? Ship by truck and send cargo by ship? Have noses that run and feet that smell?
 
How can a slim chance and a fat chance be the same, while a wise man and a wise guy are opposites?
 
You have to marvel at the unique lunacy of a language in which your house can burn up as it burns down, in which you fill in a form by filling it out and in which, an alarm goes off by going on.
 
English was invented by people, not computers, and it reflects the creativity of the human race, which, of course, is not a race at all. That is why, when the stars are out, they are visible, but when the lights are out, they are invisible.
 
PS. - Why doesn't 'Buick' rhyme with 'quick'?
 
You lovers of the English language might enjoy this.
 
There is a two-letter word that perhaps has more meanings than any other two-letter word, and that is  'UP.'
 
It's easy to understand  UP   ,  meaning toward the sky or at the top of the list, but when we awaken in the morning, why do we wake  UP?  
 
At a meeting, why does a topic come  UP?
 
Why do we speak  UP  and why are the officers  UP  for election and why is it  UP  to the secretary to write   UP  a report?
 
We call  UP  our friends.
 
And we use it to brighten  UP  a room, polish  UP  the silver; we warm  UP  the leftovers and clean   UP  the kitchen.  
 
We lock  UP  the house and some guys fix  UP  the old car.    
 
At other times the little word has real special meaning.
 
People stir  UP  trouble, line  UP  for tickets, work  UP  an appetite, and think  UP       excuses.
 
To be dressed is one thing, but to be dressed  UP   is special   .  
 
A drain must be opened  UP  because it is stopped  UP.    
 
We open  UP  a store in the morning but we close it  UP  at night.
We seem to be pretty mixed  UP  about  UP!  
 
To be knowledgeable about the proper uses of  UP,  look the word  UP  in the dictionary.
 
In a desk-sized dictionary, it takes  UP  almost 1/4th of the page and can add  UP  to about thirty definitions.
 
If you are  UP  to it, you might try building  UP  a list of the many ways  UP  is used.
 
It will take  UP  a lot of your time, but if you don't give  UP, you may wind  UP  with a hundred or more.  
 
When it threatens to rain, we say it is clouding  UP.    
 
When the sun comes out we say it is clearing  UP   .  
 
When it rains, it wets the earth and often messes things  UP.  
 
When it doesn't rain for a while, things dry  UP .
 
One could go on and on, but I'll wrap it UP  for now my time is  UP, so...it is time to shut  UP!  
 
Now it's  UP  to you what you do with this information!

 


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