Wrong Word Wednesday #66

Every week I demonstrate an example of poor English where a different word is used from the word intended. Usually, this creates a grammatically incorrect sentence and sometimes it sounds amusing, other times it sounds embarrassing. Unfortunately, the mistake is so pervasive that we all do it and such errors are usually made by those who should know better – journalists working for national or global media outlets such as newspapers and television.

Allude / Elude

Two quite rare words, so not something you will come across every day. Nevertheless, people do confuse them and when spoken in certain accents they can sound identical. They are both verbs, so this makes them that much easier to confuse.

Allude means to imply or make some other indirect reference to something (usually an opinion). “He alluded to the possibility of looking for another job.”

Elude means to evade or escape from something. “The prisoners eluded capture for six weeks before their arrest earlier today.”

The best way to remember this is that elude, escape, evade all begin with “E”.

 

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