Word of the Day : April 19, 2018

headlong

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adverb HED-LAWNG

Definition

1 : with the head foremost

2 : without deliberation : recklessly

3 : without pause or delay

Did You Know?

Headlong appeared in Middle English as hedlong, an alteration of the older hedling. Hedling is a combination of the Middle English hed ("head") and -ling, an adverb suffix which means "in such a direction or manner." Thus, hedling originally meant "with the head foremost" or, if you will, "in the direction of the head." By the late 1400s, influenced by its use in the compound word endlong, the adjective long began to be regarded as a suffix and a variant of -ling. It was this substitution of -ling with -long that led to the replacement of words like sideling and headling with the now more familiar sidelong and headlong.


Examples

He's impulsive when it comes to romance and often rushes headlong into relationships, with little thought given to their long-term viability.

"What was once optimistically pitched as a complete 800-mile program that could be built for about $35 billion and conceivably up and running by as early as 2020 has run headlong into an unrelenting wall of obstacles, including engineering, litigation and politics." — Tim Sheehan, The Fresno (California) Bee, 15 Mar. 2018



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