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Community Comment

A Word A Day — slew

July 20, 2012

Word of the Day

  • slew
  • audio pronunciation
  • \SLOO\
  • DEFINITION
  •  

noun

: a large number
  • EXAMPLES
  •  

The school's football team hosts a slew of talented players this year.

“A slew of retirements and a changing presidential election landscape have made for some ups and downs for the two parties in this year's fight for the Senate.” — From an article by Stuart Rothenberg in Roll Call, June 21, 2012

  • DID YOU KNOW?
  •  

“Slew” appeared as an American colloquialism in the early 19th century. Its origins are unclear, but it is perhaps taken from the Irish “slua,” a descendant of Old Irish “slúag,” meaning “army,” “host,” or “throng.” “Slew” has several homographs (words that are spelled alike but different in meaning, derivation, or pronunciation) in English. These include: “slew” as the past tense of the verb “slay”; “slew” as a spelling variant of “slough,” a word which is also commonly pronounced \SLOO\ and which means “swamp,” “an inlet on a river,” or “a creek in a marsh or tide flat”; and the verb “slew,” meaning “to turn, veer, or skid.”

From Merriam-Webster Online at www.Merriam-Webster.com.


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