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Read thousands of example sentences from current newspapers, magazines, and literature. We show you how words live in the wild and give you usage tips so that you're more confident about using the words you learn.

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involve

To involve means to connect. When you get involved in the Spanish Club, you attend meetings and events. If doing math well is involved in understanding advanced chemistry, that means it's a necessary part of it.

When someone is very involved, it means they are engaged or connected to a lot of activities. When someone is self-involved, all they connect with is him or herself. If getting ice cream involves walking a mile to the ice cream shop, the exercise offsets the indulgence. When no exercise is involved, it's less healthy.

Choose your words

Caught between words? Learn how to make the right choice.

regrettably/ regretfully

Regrettably is used when something’s a bummer, but it’s not necessarily your fault. Regretfully is when you’re full of regret, like if you decided to stay home and your friends saw your crush at the dance.
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contemptible/ contemptuous

Something contemptible is worthy of scorn, like the contemptible jerk who’s mean to your sister; but contemptuous is full of it, like the contemptuous look you give that guy as he speeds away in his gas guzzler.
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historic/ historical

>Something historic has a great importance to human history. Something historical is related to the past. People with big egos get them mixed up if they say they had a historic family background. Unless they helped win a war, it was probably just historical.
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emigrate/ immigrate/ migrate

Going somewhere? Emigrate means to leave one's country to live in another. Immigrate is to come into another country to live permanently. Migrate is to move, like birds in the winter. read more...

lay/ lie

The verbs lay and lie are total jerks. People often say lay when they mean lie, but it's wrong to lay around. You have to lay something, anything — lay an egg if you want. But you can lie around until the cows come home! read more...

concurrent/ consecutive

Bad guys don’t like these words because they often describe jail terms: concurrent means at the same time, and consecutive means one after the other in a series. Con artists would rather serve concurrent terms and get them over with, instead of consecutive ones. read more...

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