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Feb 2, 2023This week’s theme
Words with multiple meanings
This week’s words
The Decollation of Saint John the Baptist (1520). Artist unknown
A.Word.A.Daywith Anu Garg
1. To behead.
2. To separate sheets of paper, from a multiple-copy printout, for example.
For 1: From Latin decollare, from de- (from) + collum (neck). Earliest documented use: 1599.
For 2: From de- (from) + collate (to gather, merge, etc.), from conferre (to bring together). Earliest documented use: 1967.
Sometimes the word decollate is used as an alternate spelling for the decollete (which is a short for decolletage: a low neckline on a woman’s dress). If your name is Chasity and you’re writing a romance novel (The Other Wife), any spelling is fine. But when you need to refer to a low neckline in a formal context -- an office memo, a research paper, a court brief, a patent application, etc. -- it’s best to go with decollete.
“But supple loops of the Grene’s tail whipped around the neck of the silver behemoth as if to decollate.”
R. Dennis Baird; Talon of Light; AuthorHouse; 2004.
“These printouts were then manually decollated, bursted, sorted, folded, and inserted into envelopes.”
Subashini Selvaratnam; Boosting Operational Efficiency; New Straits Times (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia); Sep 26, 2005.
“The decollate was quite revealing but not unseemly. I didn’t do it for him. Even telling herself that, it rang false.”
Chasity Bowlin; The Other Wife; Amazon; 2021.
See more usage examples of decollate in Vocabulary.com’s dictionary.
A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:Mistakes are the portals of discovery. -James Joyce, novelist (2 Feb 1882-1941)
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