An enor­mous mis­take

Herald Sun - Switched On - - On The Couch -

Can all me­dia pre­sen­ters and re­porters please stop us­ing the word ‘‘ enor­mity’’ to re­fer to the vast size of a prob­lem or an event. While it sounds gram­mat­i­cally cor­rect, the word ac­tu­ally refers to ex­treme wicked­ness, as in: the full enor­mity of the crime. If you are look­ing for a big word, use an ad­jec­ti­val de­scrip­tion such as ‘‘ enor­mous­ness’’ or ‘‘ im­men­sity’’ or ‘‘ mag­ni­tude’’ but please don’t fur­ther dumb down proper English into the lazy ver­nac­u­lar.

Peter, email

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