double meanings

 Anyone who has written headlines for a living will know the embarrassment that comes from causing hilarity to a large group of people by writing an inadvertently two-faced headline. I have no doubt that someone at the Toronto Globe and Mail is still cringing at having written "Upturns May Indicate Some Bottoms Touched" (cited in Punch), as must earlier have been the author of the oft-quoted and variously attributed "MacArthur Flies Back to Front." It is always worth remembering that many words carry a range of meanings, or function as both nouns and verbs, and consequently offer unexpected opportunities for mischief.

Bryson’s dictionary for writers and editors. 2013.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • double meanings —    Anyone who has written headlines for a living will know the embarrassment that comes from causing hilarity to a large group of people by writing an inadvertently two faced headline. I have no doubt that someone at the Toronto Globe and Mail is …   Dictionary of troublesome word

  • double meaning — noun : double entendre the men and girls strained to anticipate the double meanings Charles Jackson …   Useful english dictionary

  • double — [dub′əl] adj. [ME < OFr < L duplus, lit., twofold (akin to Gr diploos) < duo, TWO + plus < IE * plo , fold < base * pel , to FOLD1] 1. two combined; twofold; duplex 2. having two layers; folded in two 3. having two of one kind;… …   English World dictionary

  • double-edged — adj 1.) a double edged sword/weapon something that seems to be good, but that can have a bad effect ▪ Being famous is often a double edged sword. 2.) having two different parts ▪ a double edged attack on global warming 3.) a double edged remark… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • double-entendre — [dub΄əl än tän′ drə; do͞o΄blôn tôn′drə] n. 〚Fr (now obs.), double meaning〛 1. a term with two meanings, esp. when one of them has a risqué or indecorous connotation 2. the use of such a term or terms; ambiguity * * * dou·ble en·ten·dre (dŭb əl än …   Universalium

  • Double-eyed — Dou ble eyed , a. Having a deceitful look. [R.] Deceitful meanings is double eyed. Spenser. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • double-entendre — [dub΄əl än tän′ drə; do͞o΄blôn tôn′drə] n. [Fr (now obs.), double meaning] 1. a term with two meanings, esp. when one of them has a risqué or indecorous connotation 2. the use of such a term or terms; ambiguity …   English World dictionary

  • Double entendre — An 1814 engraving of a double entendre. He: My sweet honey, I hope you are to be let with the Lodgins! She: No, sir, I am to be let alone. A double entendre (French pronunciation: [dublɑ̃tɑ̃dʁə]) or adianoeta[1] is a figure of speech in …   Wikipedia

  • Double clarinet — Medieval Zummara playing (on the left) The term double clarinet refers to any of several woodwind instruments consisting of two parallel pipes made of cane, bird bone, or metal, played simultaneously, with a single reed for each. Commonly, there… …   Wikipedia

  • Meanings of minor planet names: 17001–18000 — As minor planet discoveries are confirmed, they are given a permanent number by the IAU s Minor Planet Center, and the discoverers can then submit names for them, following the IAU s naming conventions. The list below concerns those minor planets …   Wikipedia

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