Tuesday, February 05, 2008

The Use and Abuse of the English Language

Here's the rest of the story.

Now it could be me and the aging process but when I first saw this headline on BBC news today, no less, I immediately thought - is this some dreadful disease that has befallen the clergy of the Catholic Church? Or maybe they're just all aging into their declining years?

Wrong on both counts as it turns out. It seems that the numbers of clergy are on the decline.

Now what would you have assumed from the headline?


  1. I read the word "decline" as a transitive verb, so my first thought was, "Decline what? An invitation to an R-rated movie? A meeting with George Bush? Dessert?"

    Thanks for posting this. I love these things.

  2. Hi Verna!
    I was over at your place today but didn't get to read all of your lovely posts as there were other distractions!
    Yes, I had forgotten that particular definition of the word, thanks!

  3. Some dreaded anti-religiot virus, perhaps?


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