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25+ Commonly Misused English Words And Phrases That Literally Make Us Cringe

Updated September 1, 2021 11.6k votes 1k voters 38.4k views28 items

List RulesVote up the most cringe-worthy misused English words and phrases.

English is incredibly tricky.

Influenced by numerous other languages, English has distinct grammatical features, countless homonyms, and all kinds of anomalies that make it difficult to use correctly. As a result, many common English-language mistakes show up over and over.

When you hear them or see them in writing, these misused words and phrases can bring out some pretty strong reactions. Whether they literally evoke rage or figuratively drive you nuts, there's an argument to be made for nipping them in the bud.

We've gathered just a few of the most commonly misused English words and phrases here - vote up the ones that, for all intents and purposes, irk you the most. 

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  • 26

    Telling them they have "another thing coming" is accurate, but the phrase "another think coming" has a strong argument for use. They're identical in meaning, with the former more accepted among American English speakers

  • 27

    The "bit" in question refers to what a horse has in its mouth, but there's an ongoing debate about whether they "champ" or "chomp" on them. The phrase "champ at the bit" indicates restlessness but has been called "outdated" - it seems to be the preferred usage among British English speakers. "Chomping at the bit" is considered an American variant.   

  • 28

    The phrase "bury the lede" means to not emphasize the most important part of a story. Swapping out "lede" - a jargon word that comes from journalism - for "lead" is common because the latter is more widely used.