Thursday, November 13, 2014

Word of the Week: Excoriate

It's time for another awesome new vocabulary word!

Word: excoriate

How you say it: [ik-skawr-ee-eyt, or, ik-skohr-ee-eyt]

What it is: transitive verb (used with object)

What it means: 1.) to denounce or berate severely; flay verbally. 2.) to strip off or remove the skin from. (Definition courtesy of

[Side note: to “flay” something is to remove the skin from it—used of animals, not fruit.

You can see that there is a significant difference between these meanings. The second meaning literally means to remove skin; the first meaning is a figurative use, as if you are saying things harsh enough to remove their skin.  The context will tell you which sense is being used.] 

Use it three times and it’s yours! Using a word three times can help it stick in your memory.

When her father saw the report card, he excoriated her until she cried.

His hand was excoriated when it was caught in the sanding belt.

Presidential debates consist of two dishonest politicians excoriating each other in front of an audience.

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