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    • Join Date: Sep 2006
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    #1

    Ravel/unravel

    I would really love to ask a competent person to clarify me on this "ravel/unravle" thing. I sincerely thought that I could use "ravel" as an opposite to unravel. So I wrote "please, let's not ravel our jobs" in my work email. Apparently, I was wrong. At least, a couple people (Americans) made a comment about it. Please, point out why the sentence I used is not correct. And what would be the correct way to say it? Thank you.

  1. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Ravel/unravel

    Quote Originally Posted by arakis View Post
    I would really love to ask a competent person to clarify me on this "ravel/unravle" thing. I sincerely thought that I could use "ravel" as an opposite to unravel. So I wrote "please, let's not ravel our jobs" in my work email. Apparently, I was wrong. At least, a couple people (Americans) made a comment about it. Please, point out why the sentence I used is not correct. And what would be the correct way to say it? Thank you.
    What were you trying to say?

    One of the problems with ravel is that it is an antagonym/contranym, meaning that it has opposite meanings.

    It can mean:

    to make intricate
    to undo the intricacies of

  2. curmudgeon's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Ravel/unravel

    You could say 'please lets not make our jobs more complicated. Unravel can mean to make things simpler, like 'unraveling the mysteries of life'

  3. RonBee's Avatar
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    #4

    Post Re: Ravel/unravel

    One problem could be that while many use and understand the word unravel, few use or understand the word ravel.

    ~R

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