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Thread: antagonyms

  1. #11
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    Default Re: antagonyms

    I'm not sure I count "literally" as an antagonym or contradictonym -- I think it's just misused.

    For my own rant on this particular subject, see this article on my website.

  2. #12
    Lenka is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: antagonyms

    Quote Originally Posted by rewboss View Post
    I'm not sure I count "literally" as an antagonym or contradictonym -- I think it's just misused.

    For my own rant on this particular subject, see this article on my website.
    I have read it and I believe I understand what you mean...

    By the way, the sentences at the end of your article sound really strange :). Would someone really say them? I mean, in the meaning of "figuratively".

    Could you just explain the coloured text, please?

    Many people die of laughter. Figuratively. A much smaller number of people literally die laughing: unusual but not unheard of. But there is no record of anyone ever having literally laughed their heads off that would have made headline news. (Although, on consideration, I suppose it might already have made headline news in the National Enquirer.)

  3. #13
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    Default Re: antagonyms

    Yes, those sayings are quite common idioms. For example, "to keep one's eyes peeled" means to be very observant -- "We're looking for Bill the Burglar of Brixton, so keep your eyes peeled and if you see him, arrest him on sight."

    The <cite>National Enquirer</cite> is an American tabloid newspaper which sometimes carries stories that are quite simply untrue (and it has got into a lot of legal trouble because of this). Today it concentrates mostly on stories about celebrities, but in former times it carried stories about UFOs, the Loch Ness Monster and other strange things.

  4. #14
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: antagonyms

    I agree with your piece where you say that people intend it to be an intesifier. There are some strange uses floating around at the moment, like this one and I also like people using 'to coin a phrase' as a way of introducing a cliche.

  5. #15
    Lenka is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: antagonyms

    Quote Originally Posted by Tdol View Post
    I agree with your piece where you say that people intend it to be an intesifier. There are some strange uses floating around at the moment, like this one and I also like people using 'to coin a phrase' as a way of introducing a cliche.
    It's quite funny that people use it as a intensifier. I belive to some not native speakers (such as me) it must sometimes seem a little confusing .

  6. #16
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    Default Re: antagonyms

    Quote Originally Posted by Lenka View Post
    It's quite funny that people use it as a intensifier. I belive to some not native speakers (such as me) it must sometimes seem a little confusing .
    But they do. Sometimes it makes me literally incandescent with rage.

    b

  7. #17
    Lenka is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: antagonyms

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    But they do. Sometimes it makes me literally incandescent with rage.

    b
    Have you ever had to call the firemen because of it?

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