Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Cases in which an expression can have contradictory meanings

      Some interesting examples of expressions that are in themselves capable of having opposite or contradictory meanings include the verb "stem" (which can mean either "stop" or "originate"), the phrase "to cleave" (which can mean either "to cling or attach to" or "to divide or separate"), the adjective "moot" (which can mean "disputable" or "indisputable"), the noun "oversight" (which can refer to an act of forgetting something or an act of being vigilant about something), the phrase "to garnish" (which can mean "to add something extra" or "to subtract something"), and the phrase "to sanction" (which can mean "to allow" or "to prohibit").

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