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A Blue Million

Ian in Clyde, North Carolina, is puzzled when a colleague uses the term blue million, meaning “a large amount.” Along with words like zillion and gazillion, this expression functions as an indefinite hyperbolic numeral. Sometimes the...

Manly Strokes of Wit

Martha shares a quotation from Joseph Addison, no fan of puns: “If we must lash one another, let it be with the manly strokes of wit and satire: for I am of the old philosopher’s opinion, that, if I must suffer from one or the other, I...

liberal lion

liberal lion  n.— «The fate of Paul W. Douglas, the 47-year-old liberal lion of the Senate, now rests in the hands of Mayor Richard J. Daley of Chicago, whose own future is on the line.» —“‘A Precinct Captain’s...

liberal lion

liberal lion  n.— «Idaho’s William E. Borah, liberal lion of the Senate, is pictured as he recently went outdoors in Washington for the first time to tak an automobile ride following a critical illness.» —“Observer Photo...

liberal lion

liberal lion  n.— «Barney Frank, the Bay State liberal lion, exhausted by his labors keeping America ethically pure, returned to his bachelor den, and began thumbing through a favorite periodical, the Blade. Barney’s eyes stopped at an ad:...

liberal lion

liberal lion  n.— «When last seen on the House floor, Rep. Pete McCloskey could be found demanding the impeachment of President Nixon, helping write the Endangered Species Act and denouncing the Vietnam War. It’s been a few years since the...