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January 27, 2011

Word of the Day

  • censure
  • audio pronunciation
  • \SEN-sher\
  • DEFINITION

verb

: to find fault with and criticize as blameworthy
  • EXAMPLES

He was censured by the board for his failure to report the problem.

"A United Nations committee censured Tehran for what it said was an accelerating crackdown on its opponents." -- From an article by Jay Solomon and Farnaz Fassihi in the Wall Street Journal, November 19, 2010

  • DID YOU KNOW?

"Censure" and its synonyms "criticize," "reprehend," "condemn," and "denounce" all essentially mean "to find fault with openly." Additionally, "censure" carries a strong suggestion of authority and often refers to an official action. "Criticize" implies finding fault with someone’s methods, policies, or intentions, as in "the commentator criticized the manager’s bullpen strategy." "Reprehend" implies sharp criticism or disapproval, as in "a teacher who reprehends poor grammar." "Condemn" usually suggests a final unfavorable judgment, as in "the group condemned the court’s decision to execute the criminal." "Denounce" adds to "condemn" the implication of a public declaration, as in "her letter to the editor denounced the corrupt actions of the mayor’s office."

Test Your Memory: What recent Word of the Day means "smooth" or "having a surface without hairs or projections"? The answer is ...

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