Strunk & White

I’m reading The Elements of Style by William Strunk Jr. and E. B. White, a recommendation from Alan. It’s a lovely, pocket-sized book, and the first 47 pages have been educational and thoroughly enjoyable. I particularly enjoyed the following point of style.

Flammable. An oddity, chiefly used in saving lives. The common word meaning “combustible” is inflammable. But some people are thrown off by the in- and think inflammable means “not combustible.” For this reason, trucks carrying gasoline or explosives are now marked FLAMMABLE. Unless you are operating such a truck and hence are concerned with the safety of children and illiterates, use inflammable.

I’m looking forward to the remaining 48 pages.

Posted by Dan, 18 July, 2007 under Grammar | Life


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